SPANISH FORGER. The grave slab of a Knight in armour, being cut by two Masons, elegantly dressed couple as onlookers, castle background, illuminated manuscript leaf on vellum, [c.1900]
Lot 89*
SPANISH FORGER. The grave slab of a Knight in armour, being cut by two Masons, elegantly dressed couple as onlookers, castle background, illuminated manuscript leaf on vellum, [c.1900]
Sold for £1,250 (US$ 2,099) inc. premium
Lot Details
SPANISH FORGER
The grave slab of a Knight in armour, being cut by two Masons, elegantly dressed couple as onlookers, castle background, illuminated manuscript leaf on vellum, decorative border in gold and colours, minor rubbing, in an attractive period frame in blue and gold (unexamined out of frame), [Voelkle L109, previously with Zeitlin & Ver Brugge, of Los Angeles], c.225 X 220mm., [France, c.1900]

Footnotes

  • "The Spanish forger was one of the most skilful, successful and prolific forgers of all time" (Voelkle, The Spanish Forger, p.9, 1978). The present example is a most attractive image; the lady is perhaps a daughter of the deceased knight, squired by a sympathetic betrothed.

    The forger worked in France, c.1900-1920; in Paris it is assumed but there is no firm evidence for this and there are slight indications from provenance that Nice and the South of France are possible. It is generally accepted that his apprenticeship was in a lithographic studio, and the most likely one, for stylistic reasons, seems to be that of Leon Curmer, who produced several lavish books of medieval manuscripts in the 1860s and went out of business in the 1870s. It is notable that several of these (for example Le Livre d'Heures de la Reine Anne de Bretagne, 1859-61), have a list of the artists involved.

    We are much indebted to Dr. Voelkle of the Morgan Library for help with the cataloguing of these lots, and for supplying opus numbers from the as yet unpublished second edition of his standard work on the forger.
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  1. Simon Roberts
    Specialist - Books, Maps, Manuscripts and Historical Photographs
    Bonhams
    Work
    Montpelier Street
    London, SW7 1HH
    United Kingdom
    Work +44 20 7393 3828
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