Jacobus Houbraken after Godfrey Kneller (2)
'Sir Thomas More'
Master engraving on copper, 1741
'Heads of Illustrious Persons of Great Britain'
Product Code: 090628-2
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'Sir Thomas More, 1741'
An original early copper engraving by J. Houbraken after a painting by Hans Holbein the Younger, for the 'Heads of Illustrious Persons of Great Britain'.
Hans Holbein the Younger; 1497-1543. Born in Augsburg, Bavaria, Hans received his first lessons in art from his father. In 1515 the younger Holbein went to Basel, Switzerland, with his brother, Ambrosius. Among the many scholars living in Basel at that time was the famous Dutch humanist Erasmus, who befriended the young artist and asked him to work with him.
Jacobus Houbraken: Dutch, 1698 - 1780. One of the most accomplished portrait engravers of the eighteenth century, Houbraken first studied and apprenticed under his father and evolved a technique that shared an affinity with the portrait engravers of the great seventeenth century French school, most notably, Nanteuil, Drevet and Edelinck.
His most famous engravings for English publication were those for the historical series, Heads of Illustrious Persons of Great Britain, published in parts in London between 1734 and 1752. Under the framed portrait of each individual, Houbraken engraved the delightful vignettes and objects describing the importance of each person.
This original copper line engraving is bright and unfaded, with superb black intaglio ink lines, the image measuring approx 22 cms. x 35 cms. (8 ¼ x 13¾ ins.) within a fine but well defined platemark and impression.
Printed on an early wove paper sheet measuring 26 cms. x 41 cms. (10¼ x 16 ins.)
Printed beneath the image; 'Holbein pinxit....J. Houbraken Sculps. Amst 1740'
As can be seen at The British Museum;
Unframed and unmounted, the condition of the image is excellent. The sheet has an overall time toning, handling marks and edge wear condusive with age.