22 June 2010
[PETER I, the Great]. Original plans of the Great Northern War, mid-18th century.
4 pen and ink drawings, 2 with some watercolor, (one 480 x 355mm; the others ca 350 x 300 mm), on laid paper, 2 with full or partial 'JH zoon' watermark, window-mounted (light soiling, edges lightly worn).
Four original 18th-century battle-plans after engravings published in the Kniga Marsova. The Book of Mars is one of the most important publications in the reign of Peter the Great (St. Petersburg 1713); it used some of the best artists of the day for the engravings: A. Zubov, A. Rostovtsev and O. Elliger. The middle of the 18th century saw a resurgence of interest in the achievements of Peter the Great, during which time the Kniga Marsova became seen as a model. The engravings were already highly prized for their quality, and this created a contemporary demand for drawings after the engravings (see Koshkarova).The battle-plans are titled:
- Aktsiia katoraya bila mezhdu Voisk... pod komandiem Generala Admirala Grafa Apraskina s Generala Maiora Armfellta [Action between the troops of Admiral General Count Apraskin with Major General Armfellt].
- Boi s Generalom Levengouptom [Battle with General Levengoupt].
- Aktsia Pod'dobrim [Battle at Pod'dobrii].
- Viktoria bivshaya na Chyutskom Ozere [Victory at Lake Chyut].
Bykova and Gurevich, Opisanie izdanii grazhdanskoi pechati, pp.515-17; Koshkarova, Rissunki k "Knige Marsovoi"' in Kniga VI (Moscow: 1962), pp. 132-145; Smirnov-Sokol'skii I, p.30. (4)
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