Baynton-Williams Gallery: Fine Antiquarian Maps and Prints

Woollett: Niobe

Woollett: Niobe
William Woollett.
Richard Wilson Pinxit. William Woollett sculpsit. I. Boydell excudt. Published according to Act of Parliament by J. Boydell Engraver in Cheapside; London 1761.
Engraving   Image 437 x 581mm. Sadly, although the impression is wonderful, the print has suffered damage over the years and has been laid down.
A wonderful impression of this celebrated print, engraved by Woollett after Wilson. Another example was recently on show at the Constable Gainsborough Turner Exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts in London.
In Greek mythology Niobe was the wife of the King of Thebes, with whom she had fourteen children, seven girls and seven boys. Boasting about the number and beauty of her children, she angered the gods, who sent Apollo and Diana to punish her by slaughtering them, as shown dramatically in this print. Niobe retreated home where she was turned into a weeping rock on Mount Sipylus. The tears come from the melting snow.
William Woollett was the most reknowned engraver of his time with an international reputation. Richard Wilson was one of the founder members of the Royal Academy of Arts, influencing John Constable and J. M. W. Turner.

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