Daniel Good Rare Books and Engravings
1570 Giovanni Maria Verdizzotti (1525-1600) - woodcut leaf - MERCURY & Woodman - Fables, Aesop,
Full leaf: 19.8 x 14 cm
Published in Cento Favole Morali De i piu illustri.. 1570.
The illustration is unsigned, but in his address to the reader Zilotti states that both the text and the illustrations are by Verdizotti, and that Verdizotti based some of them on G. Faerno's Fabulae centum (1563). Both Verdizotti's and Faerno's illustrations are sometimes said to be 'after Titian'.
As an artist, Verdizotti is mainly remembered for his friendship with Titian, whose pupil he was, and later his secretary from 1556. No painted work can be attributed with certainty to him but, judging from the prints in his "100 Moral Fables" (Cento favole morali), his speciality was small landscapes with tiny figures. For this work he drew directly on the block for the woodcutter, and the largely pastoral backgrounds to these fabular illustrations are believed to be similar in nature to his paintings.
A workman lost an axe. Mercury recovered a gold and silver axe which the workman refused. Mercury then recovered the real axe and gave him the others.
Truth is the better strategy.