Catalog Archive
Auction 102, Lot 550

"[Lot of 2 - Dance of Death]", Hollar, Wenceslaus

Subject: Miscellany

Period: 1816 (published)


Color: Hand Color

2 x 2.6 inches
5.1 x 6.6 cm

Two copperplate engravings from this fascinating work based upon Holbein's original 15th century designs. Wenceslaus Hollar, a Bohemian etcher, created the copper plates for the original publication in 1647. The plates then disappeared until the late 18th century, when several editions from the "newly discovered" plates began to appear. These are from an edition published by J. Coxhead. Although the traditional Dance of Death goes back to the Middle Ages, Hans Holbein altered the medieval concept to show the omnipresence and universality of death. These two plates (6 and 7 in the series) show Death confronting an Emperor and Empress.


Condition: A+

Beautiful original hand coloring with gum arabic highlights.

Estimate: $180 - $220

Sold for: $130

Closed on 3/5/2003