top of page


1692 – Paris – 1765


1731 – Paris – 1817


St Philippe de Néry - 1764


Aquatint on etched lines printed in blue after Luigi Garzi (Italian, 1638 - 1721). Size of sheet: 54.8 x 40.9 cm. Lettered in plate below the image borderline: (centre) “S. Philippe de Nery./ D’apres le dessein de Louis Garzi, qui est dans le Cabinet de Mr. Crozat./ Gravé à l’eau forte par C . . . de C . . . et en bois sous conduit par Nicolas le Sueur”; (right) “133”. 


IFF 272; Le Blanc 25; Lewine p.125.


A strong and well-printed impression on heavy laid watermarked paper with wide margins in excellent condition.


Comparative impressions: British Museum – 1855,0609.214.


Comte de Caylus & François-Philippe Charpentier: St Philippe de Néry

  • Plate 133 from the "Recueil d'estampes d'après les plus beaux tableaux et d'après les plus beaux desseins qui sont en France dans le Cabinet du Roy, dans celuy de Monseigneur le duc d’Orléans, & dans d’autres cabinets” [Collection of prints after the most beautiful paintings and after the most beautiful designs that are in France..] or better-known as “Recueil Crozat”, after the drawing by Luigi Garzi (Italian, 1638-1721) ‘ce Dessein est a la pierre noire sur un papier gris et rehauffé de blanc’ [This drawing is in black chalk on a grey paper and heightened with white].

    In the XVIII century, art books were increasingly prized by collectors and connoisseurs. One of the most desired books was the deluxe two-volume publication - the Recueil Crozat, named after the patron of the project Pierre Crozat (1661-1740), who was an avid art collector himself. He also sponsored the publication and started investing during 1720s, with the first volume published in 1729. Some plates imitating drawings were printed in colour inks from a combination of etched plates made by the amateur Comte de Caylus, peintre-graveur Paul Robert de Séri and professional printmaker Charles Cochin I, with chiaroscuro woodcuts carved by the printmaker Nicolas Le Sueur (French, 1691-1764). The second issue was published in 1742 after the death of Crozat under the auspices of Comte de Caylus and art dealer and publisher Pierre-Jean Marriette (1694-1774), who also added some explanatory text and changed the order of some of the plates.

    In the early 1760s, the project’s matrices were acquired by the publisher and art dealer Pierre-Fraçois Basan (French, 1723-1797) with the intention on publishing his own edition of the Recueil. However, Basan decided to replace woodblock technique with ‘the new manner, in imitation of wash’ (L’Avant-coureur, no.42, October 17, 1763). He enlisted François-Philippe Charpentier to take on the project to aquatint the etched copper plates in imitation of the chiaroscuro woodcuts Le Sueur had made for the first edition almost forty years before.

  • Lady Dilke, French Engravers and Draughtsmen of the XVIIIth Century, 1902;

    Francis Haskell, The Painful Birth of the Art Book, 1987;

    Kristel Smentek, Mariette and the Science of the Connoisseur in Eighteenth-Century Europe, 2014;

    Rena Hoisington, Aquatint: From Its Origins to Goya, 2021.

bottom of page