Besler, Basil "Plate 308"

Besler, Basil "Plate 308"

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Basil Besler. "Florist's Carnations". From Hortus Eystettensis. Pl. 308.   

Eicstatt, [1613]. Folio. Ca. 19 x 15 1/2 (plate mark). Engraving with expert hand coloring. With typical text show-through and minor spots. Very good condition.  

A print from a group of superbly decorative and very early botanical prints. Basil Besler (1561-1629) was a Nuremberg apothecary who had as his patron the Prince Bishop of Eicstatt (near Nuremberg). While in charge of the bishop's elaborate gardens, Besler, with the financial support of his patron, undertook his great project of botanical illustration of two large folio volumes of 374 plates, illustrating more than one thousand flowers. The prints were arranged by seasons, with the plants shown whole and life size. It was the most comprehensive as well as the largest early work of its kind. It is also one of the most delightfully drawn and visually impressive ever made. Each plate is wonderfully designed with the rhythmic pattern of the roots and stems, as well as the calligraphic invention of the lettering fully developed. These are truly joyous prints from one of the most outstanding works of botanical illustration of all time.

Click the links below to view others from this series:

Plate 4

Plate 157

Plate 193

Plate 309

Plate 317