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fection. It afterwards fell into disuse, but was revived in France towards the year 1741, by Lesneur and others, who practised it with great success. The English artists Jackson and Kirkall did not show equal ability. The method employed in printing cotton and painted paper much resembles this style of engraving:
We may name, among other eminent Italian engravers, Martin Rota, who particularly distinguished himself by the delicacy with which he handled the graver. His print of the Last Judgment, taken from Michelangiolo, evinces great talent. The Mantuan family of Ghisi, for engravings on a large scale, deserve especial mention. Agostino Caracci, a disciple of Cornelius Cort, surpassed his justly celebrated master, and executed his prints so beautifully that one is at a loss whether most to admire the correctness of outline or the beauty of detail. His engravings for the Genoa edition of Tasso's Gerusalemme Liberata, published in 1590, have caused that edition to be much sought after. This artist flourished towards the close of the 16th century. Cherubino Alberto of Borgo San Sepolcro, produced a vast number of engravings, and, amongst others, the beautiful friezes, painted by Polidoro Caldara, more known as Caravaggio, from the place of his birth, upon the façades of houses. Parmigiano distinguished himself for his manner of etching. Bartoli is celebrated for his engravings of the monuments of ancient Rome. The works of Stefano della Bella are regarded as models of perfection in miniature engraving. B. Castiglione a Genoese, is to Italy, both as painter and engraver, what Rembrandt is to Holland. Among engravers of the 18th century, Marco Pitteri distinguished himself by his peculiar mode of employing short strokes, which gave to his works an air of great originality. We may also cite Perini, D. Cunego, G. Volpato, c. Tinti, R. Morghen, G. Ottaviani, and F. Bossi.
We have not, of course, pretended to give a complete list of Italian
engravers, far less have we entered into a detailed account of their compositions ; to some even of the early artists their works can be assigned with a tolerable degree of accuracy, while, on the other hand, there exists a great variety of prints only distinguished by ciphers or monograms. In general, however, ancient Italian prints are rare, and we may conclude that they never were taken off in great numbers. They may generally be recognised by the paleness of the ink employed in their composition; some of the oldest pieces wear a bluish tint, others, again, are coloured like bistre. The Germans, on the contrary, used ink remarkable for its brilliancy and blackness.
If from the Italian we turn to the German and Dutch schools, we shall perceive that the same obscurity surrounds the works of their early artists. Bartsch commences his list with the account
VOL. VI. NO. XI.
of an engraver who is generally known under the denomination of the master of 1466. Some of the early pieces of this artist are very defective, others, again, and the larger number, evince great delicacy. Bartsch names 131 pieces as belonging to this master. Professor Christ mentions one bearing the date of 1465.
We must refrain from all mention of Francis Van Bocholt, Martin Schongauer, and Israel Van Meckeln, those early and clever masters, in order to arrive at Albert Durer, who, together with Lucas Van Leyden, founded a more perfect style of engraving than had yet been practised in Europe.
Albert Durer, who was born at Nuremberg in 1471, first studied under Michel Wohlgemuth, and speedily attained great reputation. He united the talents of a painter, an engraver, and a sculptor, and was, besides, well versed in other arts and sciences. His works are remarkable for invention and vigour of expression; and although he wanted grace, that deficiency was remedied by the delicacy with which he finished his engravings. There are 60 pieces by Albert Durer that bear a date between the years 1502 and 1527. Jackson, in his History of Wood Engraving, p. 253, doubts if Albert Durer engraved a single block. He was among the first who practised stippling, which he did for the purpose of imitating the texture of beaver hats and other similar objects. This style, called stipple, or the dotted method of engraving, consists in a combination of dots, which are either round or polyangular, according as the conical point, or the graver's point is employed in their formation. Agostino Veneziano and Boulanger sometimes stippled their flesh, and Giulio Campagnola, his backgrounds also. A century later, Demarteau introduced the practice of etching some of the dots. Opus mallei, or hammer-work, was another modification of the common mode of stippling. Lutma is almost the only artist who engraved after this fashion, and he has only left four heads or portraits so executed. Towards the latter part of the 18th century, Ryland brought over from Paris to London a taste for stipple engraving ; Bartolozzi adopted the novelty, and even abandoned the use of the graver, in order to devote himself entirely to stipple. It is practised at the present day, but not to any great extent.
The invention of engraving in aqua-fortis or etching, has been ascribed by the Germans to Albert Durer; the Italians claim for Parmiggiano the honour of the same discovery, but he was only the first who practised it in Italy. Etching, according to M. Duchesne, was in reality first discovered by Wenceslas d’Olmutz.
There exist in the collection of the British Museum several prints most probably by a Flemish master, and which bear strong marks of having been executed prior to the works of the master of 1466.
A curious engraving, in aqua-fortis, by the hand of this master, exists at the British Museum ; it bears the date of January 1496, and represents, according to some, an allegorical or satirical figure, relating to some discussions that were then pending between the Court of Rome and several German princes. See, however, Licetus, De Monstrorum causis, p. 256, and Lomazzo, Trattato dell'arte della pittura, cap. 26, p. 637, where this creature is described as a freak of nature. M. Duchesne asserts this piece to be unique.
Engraving au lavis and engraving in aquatinta, are both mere modifications of etching.
Albert Durer was followed by a number of Artists, many his own pupils, who imitated his style, and are known in France under the name of les petits maîtres. Amongst them we may cite Barthel and Hans Sebald Beham, Gregory Peins, and Heinrich Aldegrever. These masters have left behind them a variety of small prints beautifully executed.
About the middle of the 17th century, engraving in mezzotinto, or the black method of engraving, was first discovered in Germany. The invention is due to Ludwig von Siegen, or von Sicken, lieut.-colonel in the service of the Landgrave of Hesse Cassel. This officer published in 1643 the first mezzotint print; it represents the bust of Amelia Elizabeth, Landgravine of Huss. Prince Rupert learnt the process from Colonel Siegen, and communicated a knowledge of it to several London artists. Their first attempts were not very successful, until George White and John Smith produced some fine portraits in this style. Since that period, however, the black method of engraving has been carried in England to the highest possible perfection.
Mezzotinto has also continued to be cultivated in Germany. A number of portraits and historical pieces executed by Goetz, Heisse, Vogel, and the family of Heinz, are deserving of attention. Towards the close of the 17th century, the French school of engraving so far surpassed the German, that some of the first artists of the latter nation went to Paris to complete their studies. Ambling of Nuremburg and the brothers Hainzelman of Augsburg alike sought to perfect themselves under the tuition of François de Poilly at Paris. The families of Preisler, Sandrart, and Killian, each produced several able engravers. In the 18th century, G. F. Schmidt, a native of Berlin, studied at Paris under N. de Larmessin. His engravings display much talent, especially a portrait of P. Mignard and another of the Empress Elizabeth of Russia. Johann Georg Wille, another celebrated German engraver, took up his residence in Paris, and this capital, which had been the scene of
his early obscure attempts, became afterwards the theatre of his glory. Wille distinguished himself by his portraits as well as other engravings. His son, Peter Alexander, born at Paris in 1748, worthily sustained his father's reputation in the art of engraving
Little is known of the state of engraving in the Low Countries until the period at which Lucas Van Leyden flourished. This celebrated master is conjectured to have designed and executed works of art at the early age of nine ; his first dated print that has reached us bears the mark of 1508; it displays great ability, and Lucas was then only fourteen
age. His early manner of engraving was extremely minute, but in the seven prints representing the virtues, he adopted á bolder style, well suited to his large and beautiful compositions. The print of the Ecce Homo, executed at the age of sixteen, is particularly admirable. Nor can we refrain from mentioning his exquisite piece of the Crucifixion ; the groups are disposed with the greatest skill, and the various emotions that agitate each spectator rendered in a masterly style. To us there are few engravings that equal the beauty of the two we have just named,
Contemporary with Lucas flourished Dietrich van Staaren, or le maitre de l'étoile, Franz Babylone or le maitre au caducée, Cornelius Met or Metensis, Jerome Bosche, &c. Towards the close of the 16th century, J. Collaert surpassed his father in the art of engraving. Cornelius Cort, who died at Rome in 1578, after a career of only forty-two years, greatly perfected the existing style of engraving. He founded a school at Rome, and
his pupils, left behind him, as we have already said, Agostino Carracci. Among the most successful Dutch engravers of this epoch, we may name Goltzius and his two pupils, Jan Muller and Jan Faenzedam.
In the 17th century, Cornelius Bloemaert distinguished himself by the dexterity with which he handled the graver, but his pieces are wanting in firmness of stroke. Many French engravers imitated Bloemaert's ' manner. They are — Andran, Baudet, Picart, Vallet, and especially F. de Poilly.
Peter Sontman, a painter and engraver belonging to the school of Rubens, was the first who introduced the combination of aquafortis with the graver. His picturesque style is more effective than absolutely pleasing, but he showed great talent in his manner of adapting his execution to the peculiar subject he handled.
It was Rubens who carried engraving to its highest pitch of perfection ; his genius could not fail of attaining eminence in any branch of art he practised. He shaded so exquisitely as to produce with mere black and white all the effect of colouring. Born
at Cologne in 1577, Rubens built a magnificent house at Antwerp, and made it his pleasure to assemble there all the best artists of the low countries.
After Rubens, appeared Rembrandt, whose engravings are remarkable for their lightness of touch and beauty of shading. His plates are executed in a style peculiar to himself, sometimes harshly, and sometimes with the most delicate finish ; but his fine stroke is full of boldness, and the picturesque disorder visible in his compositions produces the most pleasing effect. Rembrandt's portraits evince great talent; he hit off a resemblance with wonderful accuracy, and faithfully rendered the minutest shades of expression. The collection of Rembrandts in the British Museum is one of the richest known. It contains impressions in various states, and of extreme rarity. The works of Cornelius Visscher present the most perfect models that can be offered to the study of a young engraver. Nicholas Pitau showed great talent in his print of a holy family by Raphael. Van Schuppen's Virgin Mary holding the infant Jesus is deservedly celebrated. Gerard Edelinck, a first-rate artist, is particularly known for his print of Raphael's Holy Family. This master greatly excelled in portraits and historical compositions. He handled the graver with much delicacy, and blended colours in an admirable manner. Pitau, Schuppen, and Edelinck, were all three natives of Antwerp, and passed the greater part of their lives in Paris.
Wallerant Vaillant practised mezzotint with much success. Cornelius Ploos van Amstel, a rich amateur who lived about the end of the eighteenth century, imitated so well different styles of drawing, that it is hardly possible to distinguish his prints from their originals. The manner in which he executed engravings au lavis and coloured prints is particularly admirable.
We must now retrace our steps, in order to mark the early progress of engravings in France. The first copperplates used in that country served to ornament typographical works,
as we learn from a book printed at Lyons in 1488. This volume, entitled Peregrination de oultremer en terre sainte, is chiefly a compilation taken from the itinerary of Bernard de Breydenbach, remarkable as being the first work published with views of places. The views themselves (seven in number) vary in size from a folio page to the length of five feet nine inches. The French work is edited by Nicolas le Huen, a Carmelite monk and professor of theology. Although this book was printed in France, we are ignorant to what nation the engraver of the plates, which are very indifferently executed, belongs. The prints in the French work are the same as those contained in the Latin and German editions of Breydenbach's itinerary, published at Mayence in 1486 by