- Museum number
Angels adoring the Holy Trinity, study for illustration, perhaps for the French Royal Missal at Versailles; Christ on left, Holy Ghost in centre and God the Father on right, angels at their feet
Red chalk, on sheet mounted on card with ink and gold borders
- Production date
Height: 103 millimetres
Height: 119 millimetres
Width: 227 millimetres (mount)
Width: 212 millimetres (sheet)
- Curator's comments
- According to a note on the back of an early 20th century mat, now in dossier, engraved by Cochin for 'Heurers dédiées à Mesdames de France' Paris, Jombert 1742; the drawing was in the Jombert sale (lot 92) and sold for 27 Livres.
While this may be correct, the drawing may also be a study for the French Royal Missal, made largely to Cochin's designs and discussed by Marianne Roland Michel, 'Cochin illustrateur, et le missel de la Chapelle Royale', Jahrbuch der Berliner Museen, 21, 1979, pp.153-179. According to this, four drawings by Cochin recently acquired by the Kupferstichkabinett in Berlin (showing Christ's Entry into Jerusalem; the Resurrection; the Ascension and the Descent of the Holy Spirit), are among those related to the EPISTOLAE AD USUM CAPPELLAE REGIAE VERSALIENSIS of 1767 in Bibl. Nationale de France (perhaps now transferred to the Palace at Versailles). The illustrations in gouache in the Missal are by Baudouin, son-in-law of Boucher, and by Louis-Nicolas Barbier (d.1779). In 1774 the latter exhibited at the Salon of the Academy of St Luke (cat.71) "Plusieurs sujets du Nouveau Testament...peints à gouache d'après les dessins de M. Cochin, [qui] font partie d'une suite destinée à orner le Missel de la Chapelle du Roi à Versailles". In 1767 Baudouin also exhibited at the Louvre various gouaches destined for the Missal which, the catalogue states, was "commandé pour le service de la Chapelle du Roi, par M. de Fontanieu, conseiller d'Etat, Intendant général des Meubles de la Couronne". Baudouin exhibited more of his folios for the project in 1769.
In 1775, however, Cochin exhibited his drawings for the project, and they were said to be destined to be engraved, and some were. Other artists were also involved in the project.
The four Berlin drawings by Cochin are dated 1772, as is one in the Albertina and two further drawings formerly in the Delbergue-Cormont sale, 31/5/1882, lots 12 and 12 bis; and one in the Destailleurs sale (19/5/1896, lot 734). A drawing in the museum at Angers, not finally used in the Missal, is dated 1773. In 1776, Bonnet engraved the Mistère de la très Sainte Trinité, and other engravings were published after Cochin in 1781. Some counterproofs of further drawings are in the Institut Néerlandais. The Missal contained the Epistles and the Gospels, and Cochin's contribution was more important for the latter. He produced a total of 73 designs and some other ornaments. 39 drawings have been traced, in red chalk over indications in black chalk. The drawings listed by Roland Michel (pp.174-6) include one that may be the BM drawing: "Le mystère de la très Sainte Trinité", red chalk, 211x105mm, which was with Prouté in Paris in 1962; it was used in the Epistles, fol.24, and engraved by Bonnet. A drawing of the Holy Trinity, perhaps the 'cul de lampe' for the Eve of Pentecost (fol.37 of the Gospels), was sold on 4/2/1861.
The BM drawing also (and perhaps only) served as the starting-point for the upper part of the illustration (executed by Barbier after Cochin, and illustrated by Roland Michel, fig.26) of the Trinity for the feast of the Trinity in the Gospels. As Roland Michel points out, the design is inspired by Solimena's ceiling in the Sacristy of the Dominican Church in Naples (engraved by Martini in Saint Non's Voyage Pittoresque, and illustrated here, fig.27).
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2001 May-Sep BM, P&D, 'Paper Assets' (no cat.)
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- This drawing is part of a large collection of XVIII century French book illustrations from the Fürstenberg and Schäfer collections; most are proof states of prints designed as illustrations (1997,0928.73 and following). The collection also included 16 drawings (1997,0927.7 to 22); the group was not offered at the Schäfer sale at Sotheby's in 1996 and was offered through Sotheby's by Mr Schäfer to the BM. The collector's monogram on this particular drawing has not been identified. A note on the back of the early 20th-century mat, now in the dossier, states that the drawing was in the Jombert sale, lot 92, and sold for 27 Livres.
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number