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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site


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  • Object type

  • Museum number


  • Description

    Ballarina Gentilissima; A group of grotesque figures, including dwarfs and giants, gathering around a 'ballerina' seen at centre, on tiptoe. 1686 Etching

  • Producer name

  • School/style

  • Date

    • 1686
  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 248 millimetres
    • Width: 405 millimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Content

        Numbered in brown ink '9' and lettered with title at the top: 'Ballarina Gentilissima'; signed, but almost illegible, 'Pietro de Rossi Inv' and 'Mitelli F'
  • Curator's comments

    See comment for 1852,0612.540
    For a preparatory drawing for this etching at V&A in London, see R. Hemphill, 'Comic Drawings by Pietro de' Rossi Etched by Giuseppe Maria Mitelli', Master Drawings, vol. XXXIV, 1996, pp. 279-291, see p. 285-286.
    Mounted with 1852,0614.549

  • Bibliography

    • Bertarelli 313 bibliographic details
  • Location

    Italian XVIIc Mounted Imp

  • Subjects

  • Acquisition date


  • Department

    Prints & Drawings

  • Registration number


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Object reference number: PPA303144

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