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Hendrik Goltzius, Circumcision, an engraving

  • Dürer, Life of the Virgin: Circumcision

    Dürer, Life of the Virgin: Circumcision

 

Height: 474.000 mm (Goltzius)
Width: 354.000 mm
Height: 474.000 mm (Goltzius)
Width: 354.000 mm

Bequeathed by Joseph Nollekens subject to a life interest to Francis Douce (Dürer)

PD F.3-129 (Goltzius);PD E.2-180 (Dürer)

Prints and Drawings

    Hendrik Goltzius, Circumcision, an engraving

    AD 1594

    Goltzius (1558-1616) worked in Haarlem and was a major artist and printmaker in the northern Mannerist style. This is the fourth print in a series of six engravings of the Life of the Virgin, with each print re-creating the style of six earlier famous artists. The Circumcision adapts the central group in a woodcut of the subject by Dürer of about 1503-5 (see Other Views), showing Goltzius's skill in imitating Dürer's engraving technique with his own pictorial idiom.

    The interior depicts a chapel in the church of St Bavo in Haarlem, and Goltzius has included a portrait of himself, seen behind the priest looking out at the viewer. Goltzius' biographer, Karel van Mander, records how the engraver jokingly removed his monogram and self-portrait from the print, aged it with smoke and passed it off as an original by Dürer; it was purchased for a vastly inflated price before Goltzius owned up to the deception.

    G. Bartrum (ed.), Albrecht Dürer and his legacy: (London and N.J., The British Museum Press and Princeton University Press, 2002)

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