18th Century Prints, Botanical, Copperplate, Engraving, Foreign Views, Landscapes, Prints

Volckamer Citrus Fruit Prints

Today we are sharing stunning 18th century engravings from Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” A wealthy Nuremberg merchant who had his own fine orangery, Johann C. Volckamer engaged a variety of artists and engravers, including the architectural artist Paul Decker, to produce plates for this distinctive work. Most of the plates are devoted to citrus fruits, bedecked with ribbon and positioned above views of the gardens, town squares, and palaces of Germany, Austria, and Italy. These unusual engravings are prized for their unique combination of botanical illustrations and 18th century garden designs.

Cedrato con fior e Sugo doppio. Page 174. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Cedrato con fior e Sugo doppio. Page 174. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

In the 18th century, most European gardeners were moving away from ornamental gardens and towards practical gardening of vegetables, herbs, and fruits. Gardens in colder planting zones were enclosed against insects, vermin, and the chilly climate, gifting the gardeners an opportunity to grow and cultivate citrus fruit trees for the first time. While the culture of fruit was the subject of many books- gardeners manuals with instructions as to care and pruning were in abundance- there were comparatively few illustrated books dealing with fruit alone in the beginning of the century. Published in 1708, Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides” was one of the first illustrated books dedicated to citrus fruits.

Limon Cedrato. Page 68. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Limon Cedrato. Page 68. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

Limon Cedrato. Page 162. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Limon Cedrato. Page 162. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

The first volume of “Nurnbergische Hesperides” contained 115 plates, mostly uncolored. Separated into 5 parts, the book’s first four sections focus solely on citrus fruits, while the fifth is devoted to flowers. The plates were engraved by L. C. Glotsh, and were the work of artists P. Decker, B. Kinkel, and I. C. Steinberger.

A continuation, or second volume, of “Nurnbergische Hesperides” was published in 1714, with 132 plates. Again, the plates depict mostly citrus fruits, with the exception of the last section, which highlights pineapple, palm, and coconut trees.The plates were engraved by  J. C. Dehne and J. Montalegre, and were the work of artists Delsenbach, T. G. Beckh, Krieger, and F. P. Lidner.

Aranzo da Portugal. Page 194b. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Aranzo da Portugal. Page 194b. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

Limon cornagione. Page 144a. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Limon cornagione. Page 144a. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

Cedrati musciati. Page 61. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Cedrati musciati. Page 61. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

Cedro di fiore e Sugo doppia. Page 118. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Cedro di fiore e Sugo doppia. Page 118. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

Lima Romana. Page 152. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Lima Romana. Page 152. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

Cedrato Bergamotto. Page 52.  Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copper plate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer's "Nurmbergische Hesperides". LINK.

Cedrato Bergamotto. Page 52. Johann C. Volckamer. Published Nuremberg. Copperplate engraving, hand-colored, 1708-14. From Volckamer’s “Nurnbergische Hesperides.” LINK.

 

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17th Century Prints, Botanical, Engraving, Prints

Besler Botanicals

Below are three hand-colored copper engravings from Basil Besler’s Hortus Eystettensis, the first great florilegium. Published in Eichstatt, 1613, two of these prints come from the first edition. Besler’s botanical work “is without doubt one of the greatest flower books ever produced in any country,” according to De Belder. It is “splendid in its array of large drawings, magnificent as a record of the plants in a German garden at the beginning of the seventeenth century” (Hunt). An apothecary and botanist, Besler was in charge of designing and maintaining the celebrated garden of Johann Konrad von Gemmingen, Prince Bishop of Eichstatt. Besler spent 16 years creating the drawings for this work.

Hortus Eystettensis consists of 374 plates, arranged according to season. More than 1,000 flowers are depicted, representing 667 species. Dramatic and often intensely colored, the Besler florals are the largest early botanical prints ever made. Not until the publication of Dr. Robert Thornton’s Temple of Flora 200 years later was there another botanical work fine enough to equal Besler’s.

Asparagus domesticus. Thyrsus Aasparagi. Basilius Besler. Engraving handcolored, 1613. Paper size about 22 x 17 7/8" (565 x 455mm). Good condition with later hand color.

Asparagus domesticus. Thyrsus Aasparagi. Basilius Besler. Engraving handcolored, 1613. Paper size about 22 x 17 7/8″ (565 x 455mm). Good condition with later hand color.

Cinara major Boloniensis, Cinara Genuensium, Cinara seu Artischochi vulgatior. (Artichoke). Basilius Besler. Engraving, hand colored. 1618-c.1640. Sheet size 20 3/8 x 17" (520 x 432  mm). Overall good condition.  Currently located at The Old Print Shop in NYC.

Cinara major Boloniensis, Cinara Genuensium, Cinara seu Artischochi vulgatior. (Artichoke). Basilius Besler. Engraving, hand colored. 1618-c.1640. Sheet size 20 3/8 x 17″ (520 x 432 mm). Overall good condition.
Currently located at The Old Print Shop in NYC.

Helleboraster maximus. Basilius Besler. Engraving, c.1640. Sheet size 21 7/8 x 17 1/4" (557 x 438 mm). Good condition and color. Currently located at The Old Print Shop in NYC.

Helleboraster maximus. Basilius Besler. Engraving, c.1640. Sheet size 21 7/8 x 17 1/4″ (557 x 438 mm). Good condition and color. Currently located at The Old Print Shop in NYC.

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