Catalog Archive
Auction 125, Lot 885

"[Lot of 2 - Dance of Death] Plate 29 Melior est Mons Quam Vita, Eccle. 30 [and] Spiritus Meus Attenuabitur; Dias met Breniabuntur & Solom miti Superest Sepulchrum, Job 17", Hollar, Wenceslaus

Subject: Miscellaneous Prints

Period: 1816 (published)

Publication: The Dance of Death

Color: Hand Color

2 x 2.5 inches
5.1 x 6.4 cm
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Pair of 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. This pair features and old man and woman being taunted by Death as time runs out in the tiny hourglasses in each view.


Condition: A+

Estimate: $150 - $200

Sold for: $110

Closed on 9/24/2008