La mort est inevitable. – (‘Death is inevitable’). Aeschylus (the Greek tragedy author) is seated outside while writing. An eagle flies overhead with a tortoise in its beak, about to drop the tortoise on Aeschylus’ head (thinking the author’s bald head is a rock suitable to break the tortoise’s shield). According to Pliny and Valerius Maximus, this is how Aeschylus died, and he was outside because a prophecy had foretold he would die from a falling object.

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‘La mort est inevitable.’

Engraving on hand laid (verge) paper.
Sheet size: 21 x 33,5 cm. (8,3 x 13,2 inch). Image size: 14,5 x 17,7 cm. (5,7 x 7 inch).

From: ‘La Doctrine des Moeurs ..’ printed by Louys Sevestre for Pierre Daret, Paris, 1646. First edition. Author: Marin le Roy de Gomberville. Made by order of Mazarin for the instruction of the young Louis XIV. The plates are copies in reverse after Otto van Veen’s emblems in ‘Q. Horatii Flacci Emblemata.’ Ref: Ref: Brunet II 1658. (Emblem 95)

Made by ‘Pierre Daret’ after ‘Otto Vaenius’. Pierre Daret de Cazeneuve (1604-1678) was a Frecnch painter and engraver from Paris. He was active in Paris and Italy as engraver, painter of mostly portraits. Otto van Veen, also known by his Latinized name Otto Venius or Octavius Vaenius, (c.1556-1629) was a painter, draughtsman, and humanist active primarily in Antwerp and Brussels in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth century.

Condition: Very good, given age. General age-related toning and/or occasional minor defects from handling. Please study scan carefully.


(PCO) A331-40

Additional information

Dimensions 33 × 21 × 1 cm


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