London, South Kensington
12 November 2007
HOLLAR, Wenceslaus (1607-1677). Theatru[m] mulierum, sive varietas atq[ue] differentia habituum faeminei sexus, diversorum europae nationum. London: Henry Overton, '1643' [c. 1717-1766]. 8° bound as oblong 4° (199 x 255mm). Engraved title with Hollar's arms and engraved additional title 'Ornatus mulieribus anglicanus or The Severall Habits of English Women ... Sold by H. Overton ...Wenceslaus Hollar ... fecit Londini, Ao. 1640', 48 engraved plates on 24 sheets by Hollar, all titled in Latin and numbered consecutively in the lower right corner, the majority with English titles (lightly spotted, occasional paper flaws, one affecting image). 18th-century English sheep-backed boards, gilt morocco lettering-piece on spine (a little rubbed and scuffed, short splits on joints, neat repairs on spine, hinges reinforced), 20th-century cloth box. Provenance: Arthur Frederick Hill, FSA (1860-1939, the violin-maker and writer on violins, bookplates).
A RARE SET OF HOLLAR'S SERIES OF COSTUME ENGRAVINGS, many in states unrecorded by Pennington, bringing together the plates of the Theatrum with 4 engravings of monks and nuns. This set is probably that referred to in a catalogue of Henry Overton (who had taken over the set by 1717), as a series of 48 engravings; the plates stayed with Overton until Sayer acquired them at some time before 1766. This issue appears to be unknown to Pennington, who identifies a little more than half of the plates in the sequence. Cf. Pennington 1812-1900 and 1978-1982.
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