KINGS AND QUEENS OF ENGLAND -- The True and liuely Purtractures of the Kinges of England since the Conquest with a briefe Report of the beginning of their Raignes, how long they gouerned, the time when they deceased, and the places where they were Interred. As for the rest of their Actes and other matters, I referre you to the reading of the Chronicles, where at large ye may be more informed. But these Pictures serve only for ornament, and the pleasure of the beholders. London: printed in Shoe-lane at the signe of the Faulcon by Walter Dight, [ca. 1603].
335 x 4410mm. Continuous panorama of 9 paper sheets joined together, each sheet printed with a large woodblock architectural frame divided into 3 openings, the openings containing a title and 26 full-length woodcut portraits of English monarchs, letterpress biographical caption below each portrait, COLOURED BY A CONTEMPORARY HAND, strong impressions, the paper without watermarks. At a very early date the sheets were divided, re-joined and numbered, forming pages containing 2 portraits each. (The original and just later joins and folds strengthened, a few small holes and tears, mostly repaired, very minor fraying to edges.) Loose as issued, folded in modern maroon morocco case. Provenance: early German inscription at foot of portrait of Edward VI, Prince Henry and Queen Anne, and title Die König in Engellandt on verso of title panel; three unidentified collection stamps (not recorded by Lugt).
AN APPARENTLY UNRECORDED PICTORIAL SERIES OF THE ENGLISH MONARCHS. It is likely that this series was published to celebrate the recent accession of James I to the throne, since the series ends with portraits of him, his Queen Anne and son Prince Henry, and his accession in 1603 is the last dated event (dated 1602, following the contemporary calendar). The present woodcuts are closely related to an engraved series by Hendrick Goltzius published in 1585, in which the monarchs are depicted in the same attitude (cf. Illustrated Bartsch, vol. III (1980), ed. W.L. Strauss, nos. 219-225). Pictorial series of the English monarchs enjoyed a vogue at the end of the 16th and early 17th-century, with artists such as Goltzius, Lucas d'Heere and Simon van de Passe producing portraits of the monarchs and their court. The early 17th-century German inscription at the foot of Prince Henry gives the cause of his death as a chill after playing tennis on [6 November] 1612. Only seven books are associated with the printer, Walter Dight, active from 1590 to his death in 1618; he is the only stationer known to have printed in Shoe Lane. This work in not recorded by STC, and it is NOT IN THE BRITISH LIBRARY OR THE NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY.