It is known that Los Proverbios originally comprised 22 plates, which were left with Goya's son Xavier upon the artist's departure from Spain. After Xavier's death in 1854 eighteen of them went to the Royal Academy of San Fernando in 1862, where they were cleaned and published in 1864. For reasons that have never been made clear, the remaining four plates made their way to Paris, where they were discovered in the early 1870's and published in the French periodical L'Art in 1877. Harris must not have been aware of the present deluxe edition of one hundred copies only. It included not only the standard impressions on laid paper, but also a complete set of impressions before letters on Japan paper, described by Harris as trial proofs before the edition.