Explore Collections Explore The Collections
You are here: CollectionsOnline  /  Die schönsten Ornamente und merkwürdigsten Gemälde aus Pompeji, Herkulaneum und Stabiae nebst einigen Grundrissen und Ansichten nach den an Ort und Stelle gemachten Originalzeichnungen von Wilhelm Zahn. (Zahn, königlich Preussischem Professor) I (--X) Heft. = Les plus beaux ornemens et les tableaux les plus remarquables de Pompei, d'Herculanum et de Stabiae avec quelques plans et vues, d'après les dessins originaux exécutés sur les lieux par Guillaume Zahn. I (--X) cahier.
top left corner
top right corner
bottom left corner
bottom right corner
Image Not Yet Available
ZAHN, Wilhelm (1800--1871)
Die schönsten Ornamente und merkwürdigsten Gemälde aus Pompeji, Herkulaneum und Stabiae nebst einigen Grundrissen und Ansichten nach den an Ort und Stelle gemachten Originalzeichnungen von Wilhelm Zahn. (Zahn, königlich Preussischem Professor) I (--X) Heft. = Les plus beaux ornemens et les tableaux les plus remarquables de Pompei, d'Herculanum et de Stabiae avec quelques plans et vues, d'après les dessins originaux exécutés sur les lieux par Guillaume Zahn. I (--X) cahier.
Berlin: bei Georg Reimer, 1828--29.
[20] p., [10] chromolitho. t.-pl., 100 [i.e. 102], [10] pl. ; 75.5 cm. (1º)

Zahn's intention in his immensely ambitious exploitation of contemporary advances in colour printing technology was to reproduce exactly the colours of the paintings uncovered at Pompeii as he had recorded them during the excavations of 1825-7, before they could be degraded by the atmosphere. This is the first series only, published in 10 parts; two further series, also consisting of ten fascicles each, appeared between 1841 and 1859. The plates are numbered 1A, 1B, 2—100 with a bis plate 50 referred to in the text as ‘50a’, and each part includes a leaf of descriptive letterpress with parallel text in German and French. Twelve of the numbered plates are etched and engraved, sixty are lithographs and thirty chromolithographs printed in between two and eight colours; many of the chromolithographs are printed on china paper with additional hand-colouring, and mounted on leaves with separately-printed lithographic captions, signatures and plate numbers. Plates 1A and B form contiguous sections of a map of Pompeii and may be joined in some copies; these plates exist also in an etched, probably earlier version. Some plates are found unnumbered in earlier states; both Soane copies have pl. 15 misnumbered '25', but pl. 33 which is misnumbered '13' in many copies is here correctly numbered. Plate 5 is unnumbered in both copies and pl. 47 (unnumbered in some copies) is numbered in ink. Each part in this form of the first series has its own chromolithographed title-plate printed in red, green and yellow, and an outline lithographed decorative tail-piece, which are unnumbered and (unusually) all present in both Soane copies; the title-plates to parts one through five are dated 1828, and those to parts six through ten are dated 1829. Other, probably later forms of the work have only two title-plates, those for parts V and X, which are mostly amended in manuscript to 'I--V' and 'VI--X' (see the BAL and Bodleian Library copies for examples of this form). No general title-page was issued, so the title-plate to part one, five or ten tends to be commandeered for this purpose, with or without manuscript alteration to its 'Heft' and 'Cahier' number. In Soane copy 1, which lacks the part I title-plate, the part X title-plate has been placed at the head of the work, presumably because it indicated the extent of the whole. Also unusually, Soane copy 1 has a variant form of the title-plates to parts II and III, being in German only rather than German and French as transcribed above. The title-plates have an ornamental border found in two designs, one apparently earlier and simpler which appears in the first five parts of both Soane copies, and a later, more elaborate one found in parts six to ten, although the part five title-plate is found with both designs. There are three designs of the tail-piece found in both Soane copies, parts one to five including a female figure with a palette, part VI a dancing couple, and parts VII--X a male figure with cornucopia. For further details see BAL, Early printed books, no. 3736.

Copy Notes One of Soane's two copies was purchased from John Williams, architectural bookseller at 10, Charles Street, Soho Square, for £9 9s. on 15 August 1831 and paid by cheque on Praed & Co. (Cheque Stubs). Soane built Tyringham and the Banking House on Fleet Street for William Praed.
Copy 1: Lacking the part I title-plate and with that to part X bound in its place; all other title-plates are present. The title-plates to parts II and III are in German only.
Copy 2: 71.1 cm.

Binding Copy 1: C19th half calf, blind triple-rule and thick gilt-ruled borders, blind-ruled and dotted spine with gilt-tooled false bands and green leather spine-label, marbled-paper boards.
Copy 2: C19th diced russia calf, gilt-ruled and blind-tooled panels and spine, gilt-lettered, marbled edges. This is probably the copy of 'Herculanum double Elephant russia 1/2' bound by Edwin Hutchinson for £3 10s., 2 September 1831. (Priv. Corr. XVI.E.7.16 bookbinding).

Reference Number 1295


If you have any further information about this book,
please contact us:

books@soane.org.uk