Catalog Archive

Auction 157, Lot 332

"Wasserley Weise die Einwohner in Virginia zu Fischen Pflegen", Bry, Theodore de

Subject: Virginia, Native Indians

Period: 1590 (circa)

Publication: Grand Voyages

Color: Black & White

9.9 x 12.3 inches
25.1 x 31.2 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.

This superb engraving depicts the various fishing methods used by Native Indians in Virginia. The text at left describes how the Indians attached the spiked tails of horseshoe crabs to long reeds in order to create spears for fishing. The Indians also used reeds and twigs to create fences and enclosures in the water to trap the fish. Numerous fish, crabs, horseshoe crabs, sea turtles, eels, and other marine life can be seen in the water.


Condition: B+

A nice impression on watermarked paper with a short centerfold separation at top. A short tear at bottom near centerfold has been repaired on verso with old paper. Trimmed inside the neatline at right and bottom by the bookbinder.

Estimate: $400 - $500


Closed on 5/4/2016