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inferno divine comedy canto xxv lithograph after sandro botticelli 1925


Inferno (divine Comedy Canto XXv). Lithograph. After Sandro Botticelli. 1925.


£145 | $202 USD | €169 EUR
Item Number: SA816778
Date of manufacture: 1920
Current Status: For sale
Seller: The Lithograph Archive
This antique has been viewed 19 times in the past month with the most views from Russia.


Detail from 'Divine Comedy' by Sandro Botticelli. Inferno.
The Divine Comedy is a long Italian narrative poem by Dante Alighieri, begun c. 1308 and completed in 1320, a year before his death in 1321. It is widely considered to be the pre-eminent work in Italian literature and one of the greatest works of world literature. The poem's imaginative vision of the afterlife is representative of the medieval world-view as it had developed in the Western Church by the 14th century. It helped establish the Tuscan language, in which it is written, as the standardized Italian language. It is divided into three parts: Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso.
The narrative takes as its literal subject the state of the soul after death and presents an image of divine justice meted out as due punishment or reward, and describes Dante's travels through Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise or Heaven. Allegorically the poem represents the soul's journey towards God, beginning with the recognition and rejection of sin (Inferno), followed by the penitent Christian life (Purgatorio), which is then followed by the soul's ascent to God (Paradiso). Dante draws on medieval Roman Catholic theology and philosophy, especially Thomistic philosophy derived from the Summa Theologica of Thomas Aquinas. Consequently, the Divine Comedy has been called "the Summa in verse". In Dante's work, the pilgrim Dante is accompanied by three guides: Virgil (who represents human reason), Beatrice (who represents divine revelation, theology, faith, and grace), and Saint Bernard of Clairvaux (who represents contemplative mysticism and devotion to Mary the Mother). Erich Auerbach said Dante was the first writer to depict human beings as the products of a specific time, place and circumstance as opposed to mythic archetypes or a collection of vices and virtues; this along with the fully imagined world of the Divine Comedy, different from our own but fully visualized, suggests that the Divine Comedy could be said to have inaugurated realism and self-portraiture in modern fiction.
An anonymous author, writing in about 1540, informs us that Botticelli "painted and illustrated a Dante on sheepskin for Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici which was held to be something marvelous." He refers to an extraordinarily ambitious and original project. Whereas previous artists had decorated manuscripts of the Divine Comedy, usually with small images of a few key scenes that appeared on the same page as the text, Botticelli planned to illustrate every canto. Moreover, the drawings are very large, arranged horizontally (unlike most books) and full the entire smooth (flesh) side of the parchment. Originally, the images could be seen together with the text, written by Niccolò Mangona on the opposite (rough) side of the parchment. Of this project 92 parchment sheets survive, divided between Berlin and the Vatican. Botticelli completed the outline drawings for nearly all the cantos, but only added colors for a few. The artist shows his "learning" and artistic skill by representing each of the three realms each in a distinctive way. More than his contemporaries, Botticelli was extremely faithful to Dante's text. Moreover, especially in the teaming, bewildering images of the Inferno, he included a large number of scenes for each canto. For the Purgatorio, Botticelli was somewhat more selective and made greater use of "rational" perspective: for the Paradiso, his simplified drawings capture the ethereal nature of the text. Botticelli also created a highly detailed cross section map of the underworld, and a frightening portrayal of Satan on a double sheet.
The plate is wonderfully presented in a bespoke, handmade and hand-finished ultra-premium frame set. The outer frame, is finished with a renaissance gold leaf (with a thick central gold foil). The well proportioned mount is finish
A timeless and effortlessly sophisticated collection of highly decorative and professionally framed fine, rare, old and vintage hand coloured lithographs, chromolithographs, lithographs and etchings.


This item is antique. The date of manufacture has been declared as 1920.


Height = 39 cm (15.4")
Width = 45 cm (17.7")
Depth = 4 cm (1.6")

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The Lithograph Archive
United Kingdom

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