French Engraving Print of Le Coq
This is an original engraving of a circa 1760 illustration titled "Le Coq" (The Rooster) by the French artist Jacques de Seve (active 1742-1788). The title is in the center beneath the image with L. Le Grand Sculp. to the right (Sculp. is the abbreviation for "sculpsit", a Latin word used to identify the engraver of an artwork originally created by another artist). To the left is lettered "De Seve del" (del is an abbreviation of “Delineavit,” which is Latin for “he drew” or “delineated it”). This is followed by Ediz.(?) a drawing of a flower, the letters lla in script and the number 1--possibly meaning this was the first edition or printing.
Jacques de Seve was commissioned to provide illustrations for several natural history encyclopedias published in the mid to late 1700's (although there is no indication, such as a plate number or volume number that this engraving was once part of a book). His realistic drawings were often set against landscape backgrounds, like the classic French farmstead in this print. The French etcher/engraver of the print, Louis Le Grand, was also active in the eighteenth century.
This impression of "The Rooster" is printed on hand-made, laid paper, shown by the lines embedded in the paper by the papermaking process. It was hand tinted, and the colors are still vivid and fresh. The print is unmatted, with full margins, and measures 9 inches by 6 3/4 inches to the plate mark and exclusive of the margins. The sight size is 11 3/4 by 8 1/2 inches. The print was framed within the last 40 years with a matte finished, 1 1/2 inch wide wood frame in a russet color that nicely complements the artwork. The framed size is approximately 14 3/4 by 11 1/2 inches and the piece weighs 2 pounds. The glass cover is conservation glass, used to protect the art from UV light.
The print is in very good condition, with only a slight ripple when viewed from certain angles. The frame, glass and dust paper are in excellent condition and a sturdy wire has been installed for hanging. This fine, early etched and engraved print is highly decorative and increasingly rare.
Reverend Jonathan Fisher (1768-1847) of Blue Hill, Maine created 172 woodcuts for his 1834 book "Scripture Animals." In 1967, Art Fair, Inc. of New York City reproduced 6 of them, authorized by the Jonathan Fisher Memorial, Inc. Each of the 1967 prints has a First Edition seal on it*; it's a blind stamp (no color, just embossed on the paper). Located on this print on the lower right, it's pictured in one of our photos.
We've included a photo of the Certificate of Authenticity we found online, which shows that the 1967 prints were numbered on the COA, not on the print itself. We've shown the cover of the booklet that accompanied them, also found online. (We don't have these--we've shown them for information only). The rooster woodcut is featured on the cover of the 1963 reprint of Fisher's book (also pictured).
This wonderful folk art print is framed in a dark stained, narrow oak moulding under glass. The framed size is 12 inches high by 15 inches wide. It weighs 1 3/4 pounds and has an old hanging wire on the back, as well as the old dustpaper, torn but mostly intact. The frame and glass (which is wavy) are older than the print and in very good condition, as is the print.
This is such a handsome print and wonderfully decorative in so many settings.
* Any of these prints without the First Edition seal are later copies. The paper color used for this print is the original one. Any other paper color denotes a later reproduction.