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Attributed to Erhard Schön (circa 1491-1542)
Attributed to Erhard Schön (circa 1491-1542)

Army Train and Death (Hollstein 16)

Attributed to Erhard Schön (circa 1491-1542)
Army Train and Death (Hollstein 16)
the complete woodcut printed from four blocks, circa 1532, on four attached sheets, watermark Imperial Eagle with Initials HS (similar to Briquet 285, dated 1596), a somewhat later impression of this extremely rare print, first state (of two), before Steinbach's address, trimmed outside the subject, a small made-up paper loss, the sheet rolled and creased, some foxing
S. 311 x 1527 mm.
Friedrich August II, King of Saxony (L. 971)
H. Füssli & Cie. (L. 1008)
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Please note this lot is sold framed

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Murray Macaulay
Murray Macaulay

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Lot Essay

Long thought to be by an artist from the circle of Sebald Beham ('Pseudo-Beham), this woodcut frieze is now firmly attributed to Erhard Schön, the most prolific designer of woodcuts in Nuremburg of the generation after Dürer. The coat-of-arms with the three coins on the provisions wagon on the left are those of Hans Guldenmund, the first printer and publisher of this work.
The Turkish prisoners and the camel relate to Charles V's perpetual battles with the Ottoman Empire, yet this depiction of a contemporary army train is allegorised by the figure of Death triumphant at the end of this procession, and is thought to be based on now lost verses by Schön's fellow Nuremberger, the cobbler-poet Hans Sachs (1494-1576).
Hollstein records only five impressions of the first state in public collections, in Dresden, Gotha, London, Nuremberg and Paris (BN), and two of the second, final state with the printer Steinbachs address, in Berlin and London.

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