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Daniel Good Rare Books and Engravings

1617 Marcus Geerhaerts, fable, the Bull and the Frogs, hand coloured, engraving

1617 Marcus Geerhaerts, fable, the Bull and the Frogs, hand coloured, engraving

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The Frog and Bull

The Frog and the Ox appears among Aesop's Fables and is numbered 376 in the Perry Index. The story concerns a frog that tries to inflate itself to the size of an ox, but bursts in the attempt. It has usually been applied to socio-economic relations.

Issued in the series:

Vorstelijcke warande der dieren; waer in de Zeden-rijcke Philosophie, Poëtisch, Morael, en Historiael, vermakelijck en treffelijck wort voorghestelt

1617

Plate: 13 x 12 cm. Trimmed to outside plate mark. Text to verso.

Marcus Gheeraerts the Elder (c. 1520 – c. 1590) was a Flemish printmaker and painter associated with the English court of the mid-16th century and mainly remembered as the illustrator of the 1567 edition of Aesop's Fables.

Gheeraerts is most noteworthy as a printmaker. He was a keen innovator and experimented with etching at a time when woodcut and engraving were dominant techniques. Gheeraerts' style resembles that of Pieter Bruegel the Elder. In his own day, Gheeraerts was particularly famous as a draughtsman of birds and animals, and since the Protestant Reformation had halted the church art market, he showcased his talent in the fable book De warachtighe fabulen der dieren from 1567. He etched the title page and 107 fable illustrations and had his friend, Edewaerd de Dene, write the book's fables in Flemish verse. 

This edition 1617. Dutch text to verso. Later hand colour with some use of gilt.

CATALOGUE RAISONNÉ: de Vries, De Nederlandsche Emblemata, 73; Landwehr, Dutch Emblem Books, 252a; Hollstein, Dutch and Flemish, VII, p. 100, nos. 1-108

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