Catalog Archive
Auction 198, Lot 652

"Temple of Tafa in Nubia", Roberts, David

Subject: Egypt

Period: 1846 (dated)


Color: Hand Color

13.9 x 9.9 inches
35.3 x 25.1 cm
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David Roberts, R.A. (1796-1864) was one of the first Europeans to depict the Middle East. Considered a dangerous and barbaric land, it was not until the Napoleonic invasion of Egypt after 1798 that any serious study had been done into the Pharoic culture. Sir Richard Burton's infamous penetration of Mecca did not occur until 1858, twenty years after Roberts painted the wonders of the Moslem world and the Holy Land. The sketchbooks from Roberts' journeys were one of the most popular publications of its time, allowing Victorian Europeans a peek into the exotic world from the comfort of their parlors.

This attractive lithograph depicts the ancient Temple of Taffeh, which was originally part of the Roman fortress Taphis built during the rule of Roman Emperor Augustus. In 1960, as a gesture of goodwill between the nations of Egypt and Netherlands, the Temple was relocated to the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden in Leiden. Produced in the tinted lithograph process and finished by hand with watercolor. Published by F.G. Moon in London. English text on verso.


Condition: A

On a sturdy sheet with two tiny pinholes at the top corners of the image. There is light dampstaining along the sheet edges.

Estimate: $160 - $190


Closed on 6/19/2024