- Museum number
The Triumph of Fire; in the centre a float with a number of torches; drawn and surrounded by Cupids in procession holding other torches and some instruments (tambours, trumpets); two of them hold banners inscribed: 'ALFUOCHO bEDET' (on the left and 'PURITA' (on the right). c.1465-80
- Production date
- 1465-1480 (circa)
Height: 98 millimetres (oval; trimmed at the corners)
Width: 235 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- The engraving belongs to the so-called 'Otto Prints'; for this group see the commentary to Hind, A.IV.2 (1852-3-1-3).
This is a unique and early impression, touched with pen and brown ink on the wheels of the chariot. The inscription on the l "beware of the fire" is ambiguous, according to Hind it should be interpreted as an instruction to keep the fire alight while Zucker (in 'The Illustrated Bartsch, Commentary', vol. 24, part 1, pp. 132-133, no. 014) felt that it was a serio-comic warning for lovers to watch out for the potentially dangerous consequences of the flames of love. If the latter interpretation is correct then the two inscriptions refer to the contrasting symbolism of fire - acting as a purifying agent in Christian doctrine, as well as a symbol of religious ardour, and at the same time as an image of Passion.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- One of 6 'Otto' prints purchased at the Otto sale, for a total of £151 16s (including Evans's commission)
Provenance: Baron Philippe de Stosch (1731-1757); Wilhelm Muzel; Ernst Peter Otto (Leipzig, 1783); Klauss Otto (Leipzig, Weigel, 1852).
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number