PICCARDA DONATI AND SOULS WHOSE VOWS HAD BEEN BROKEN
Original 9 3/4 inch x 7 3/4 inch Engraving PICCARDA DONATI AND SOULS WHOSE VOWS HAD BEEN BROKEN.
Piccarda Donati was a 13th-century Italian noblewoman. Sister of Corso Donati and of Dante’s friend Forese Donati, she is the first character Dante encounters in Paradise. She is on the Sphere of the Moon, the lowest sphere of Heaven. Piccarda explains to Dante that her placement is due to “vows neglected and, in part, no longer valid.” When she was alive, Piccarda, a nun, was forcibly removed from her convent by her brother Corso, in order to marry her to a Florentine man and further her family’s political interests. She died soon after her wedding. In her acquiescence to her brother’s wishes, though forced, she neglected her vows to God.
Text below the image: ”Such saw I many a face, all stretch’d to speak.” Canto III., lines 14-15.
Engraved by Adolphe François Pannemaker (1822 – 1900). Wood engraver. Graduate of Ecole Royale in Brussels. He went to Paris and worked there for more than 30 years, especially as book illustrator, often working with his son and pupil, Stéphane Pannemaker (1847-1930), especially on reproductions of Gustave Doré’s book illlustrations.
Illustration by Gustave Doré (1832 – 1883). The most popular and successful French book illustrator of the middle of the 19th century. Doré became widely known for his illustrations to such books as Danté’s Inferno (1861), Don Quixote (1862), and the Bible (1866), and he helped to give European currency to the illustrated book of large format. He was so prolific that at one time he employed more than forty wood engravers. His work is characterized by an eclectic mix of Michelangelesque nudes, northern traditions of sublime landscape, and a highly spirited love of the grotesque and bizarre.
Doré began work on his illustrations for the Divine Comedy in 1855 at a time when there was a renewed interest in Dante in France. Doré himself financed the publication of the Inferno in 1861 and this was so successful that the Purgatory and Paradise were published by Hachette in 1868 as a single volume. Subsequently, Doré’s Dante illustrations appeared in roughly 200 editions in many languages.
Illustration for Dante Alighieri’s “The Divine Comedy” widely considered to be the preeminent work in Italian literature and one of the greatest works of world literature. It is divided into three parts: Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. This illustration is from Paradiso.
Published as a part work by Cassell and Company, Limited, London. May 1903 – September 1904.
Page size 13 1/4 inch x 10 inch
The engraving, on fairly thick paper, is in very good condition. Reverse side blank.
Availability: 1 in stock