Catalog Archive
Auction 185, Lot 388


"[How the Indians Go to War] Qua Ratione Indi in Bellum", Bry, Theodore de

Subject: Colombia, Natives

Period: 1595 (circa)

Publication: Grands Voyages, Part V

Color: Black & White

7.5 x 6.1 inches
19.1 x 15.5 cm
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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 scene shows how the Colombians in the valley of Tunis prepared for war. The Caribs (Arawaks) were intense fighters who brought poisonous arrows and spears into battle as well as an idol of their war god Chiappam. According to this account, they engaged in cannibalism and smeared themselves with the blood of their enemies. On a full sheet of Latin text measuring 9.6 x 14".


Condition: A

A nice impression on a bright sheet with a fleur-de-lis watermark, marginal soiling, and some tiny chips and tears along the edges of the sheet.

Estimate: $90 - $110

Sold for: $55

Closed on 11/17/2021