The Cemetery at Eyüp, Istanbul signed and dated 'Preziosi 1859' (lower left), pen and ink and watercolour heightened with bodycolour 42 x 59cm (16 9/16 x 23 1/4in).
PROVENANCE: Private collection, UK
Eyüp, situated at the western end of the Golden Horn, has been a place of pilgrimage since the rediscovery of the grave of Abu Ayyub al-Ansari. He was the companion and standard-bearer of the Prophet Muhammad, and fell in the first attempted siege of Constantinople in 674. Nearly eight centuries later, soon after the Conquest of Istanbul, Sultan Mehmet II ordered a tomb and the Eyüp Sultan Mosque to be constructed over where he had been interred. It was the wish of many pious Muslims to be buried in the vicinity, and this picture show clearly the carved and painted tombstones of men and women, alongside the steep path that leads up the hill from the mosque complex below. On the skyline in the distance can be see the imperial mosques of the old city of Stamboul.
We are grateful to Charles Newton and Briony Llewellyn for their assistance in cataloguing this lot.