Catalog Archive
Auction 100, Lot 469

"XXVIII", Bry, Theodore de

Subject: Exploration

Period: 1593 (circa)

Publication: Grands Voyages

Color: Black & White

7.8 x 6.6 inches
19.8 x 16.8 cm

This copper engraving is from a remarkable series of publications, illustrating voyages of discovery and travels of exploration to various parts of the world. The project was begun by Theodore de Bry of Frankfurt, in 1590 and was to continue for another 54 years. They became known collectively as the Grands Voyages (to America and the West Indies) and the Petits Voyages (to the Orient and the East Indies). De Bry died after the first six parts of the Grands Voyages were completed. The project was completed initially by his widow and two sons, Johann Theodore de Bry and Johann Israel de Bry, then by his son-in-law, Matthaus Merian in 1644.

From Part III - Von Stanten's Voyages to Brazil in 1546-1555. Hans von Stanten was captured by the Tupinamba Indians of Brazil and held for nine months, narrowly escaping being killed and eaten. His account of their tribal customs, especially in regard to cannibalism and religious practices, is one of the most fascinating early accounts of the New World. This illustration depicts the ritual preparations made by the Tupí women the day before the execution. The prisoner is tied with a rope round his neck while the women paint his forehead, decorate him with feathers, cut off his eyebrows and dance round him. Then they paint a killing stick [called an Iwera Pemme] and dance around that.


Condition: A

Tissue repairs in margins.

Estimate: $90 - $120

Sold for: $65

Closed on 9/12/2002