Vasari's Lives of the Artists
Released from prison, Marc' Antonio finished engraving for Baccio Bandinelli a large plate that he had previously begun, with a great number of nude figures engaged in roasting S. Laurence on the gridiron, which was held to be truly beautiful, and was indeed engraved with incredible diligence, although Bandinelli, complaining unjustly of Marc' Antonio to the Pope while that master was executing it, said that he was committing many errors. But for this sort of gratitude Bandinelli received the reward that his lack of courtesy deserved, for Marc' Antonio, having heard whole story, and having finished the plate, went, without Baccio being aware of it, to the Pope, who took infinite delight in the arts of design; and he showed him first the original drawing by Bandinelli, and then the printed engraving, from which the Pope recognized that Marc' Antonio not only had committed no errors, but had even corrected with great judgment many committed by Bandinelli, which were of no small importance, and had shown more knowledge and craftsmanship in his engraving than had Baccio in his drawing. Wherefore the Pope commended him greatly and ever afterwards received him with favor; and it is believed that he might have done much for him, but the sack of Rome supervening, Marc' Antonio became little less than a beggar, seeing that, besides losing all his property, he was forced to disburse a good ransom in order to escape from the hands of the Spaniards. Which done, he departed from Rome, never to return; and there are few works to be seen which were executed by him after that time. Our arts are much indebted to Marc' Antonio, in that he made a beginning with engraving in Italy, to the advantage and profit of art and to the convenience of her followers, in consequence of which others have since executed the works that will be described hereafter.
Now Agostino Veneziano, of whom we have already spoken, came to Florence, after the circumstances described above, with the intention of attaching himself to Andrea del Sarto, who was held to be about the best painter in Italy after Raffaello. And so Andrea, persuaded by this Agostino to have his works engraved, made a drawing of a Dead Christ supported by three Angels; but since the attempt did not succeed exactly according to his fancy, he would never again allow any work of his to be engraved. After his death, however, certain persons published engravings of the Visitation of S. Elizabeth and of the Baptism of the people by S. John, taken from the work in chiaroscuro that Andrea painted in the Scalzo at Florence. Marco da Ravenna, likewise, in addition to the works already mentioned, which he executed in company with Agostino, also engraved many others by himself, which are all good and worthy of praise, and are known by his signature, which has been described above. Many others, also, have there been after these, who have worked very well at engraving, and have brought it about that every country has been able to see and enjoy the honored labours of the most excellent masters.
Nor has there been wanting one who has had the enterprise to execute with wood blocks prints that possess the appearance of having been made with the brush after the manner of chiaroscuro, is an ingenious and difficult thing. This was Ugo da Carpi, who, although he was a mediocre painter, was nevertheless a man of most subtle wit in strange and fanciful inventions. He it was, as has been related in the thirtieth chapter of the Treatise on Technique, who first attempted, and that with the happiest result, to work with two blocks, one of which he used for hatching the shadows, in the manner of a copper plate, and with the other he made the tint of color, cutting deeply with the strokes of the engraving, and leaving the lights so bright, that when the impression was pulled off they appeared to have been heightened with lead white. Ugo executed in this manner, after a design drawn by Raffaello in chiaroscuro, a woodcut in which is a Sibyl seated who is reading, with a clothed child giving her light with a torch. Having succeeded in this, Ugo took heart and attempted to make prints with woodblocks of three tints. The first gave the shadow; the second, which was lighter in tone, made the middle tint, and the third, cut deeply, gave the higher lights of the ground and left the white of the paper. And the result of this, also, was so good, that he executed a woodcut of Aeneas carrying Anchises on his back, while Troy is burning. He then made a Deposition from the Cross, and the story of Simon Magus, which had been used by Raffaello for the tapestries of the above-mentioned Chapel; and likewise David slaying Goliath, and the Flight of the Philistines, of which Raffaello had prepared the design in order to paint it in the Papal Loggie. And after many other works in chiaroscuro, he executed in the same manner a Venus, with many Loves playing about her.
Now since, as I have said, he was a painter, I must not omit to tell that he painted in oils, without using a brush, but with his fingers, and partly, also, with other bizarre instruments of his own, an altarpiece which is on the altar of the Volto Santo in Rome. Upon this altarpiece, being one morning with Michelagnolo at that altar to hear Mass, I saw an inscription saying that Ugo da Carpi had painted it without a brush; and I laughed and showed the inscription to Michelagnolo, who answered, also with a laugh, that it would have been better if he had used a brush, for then he might have done it in a better manner.
The method of executing these two kinds of woodcuts, in imitation of chiaroscuro, thus invented by Ugo da Carpi, was the reason that, many following in his steps, a great number of most beautiful prints were produced by others. For after him Baldassarre Peruzzi, the painter of Siena, made a similar woodcut in chiaroscuro, which was very beautiful, of Hercules driving Avarice, a figure laden with vases of gold and silver, from Mount Parnassus, on which are the Muses in various lovely attitudes. And Francesco Parmigiano engraved a Diogenes for a sheet of royal folio laid open, which was a finer print than any that Ugo ever produced. The same Parmigiano, having shown the method of making prints from three blocks to Antonio da Trento, caused him to execute a large sheet in chiaroscuro of the Beheading of S. Peter and S. Paul. And afterwards he executed another, but with two blocks only, of the Tiburtine Sibyl showing the Infant Christ in the lap of the Virgin to the Emperor Octavian; a nude man seated, who has his back turned in a beautiful attitude; and likewise an oval print of the Madonna lying down, with many others by his hand that may be seen in various places, printed after his death by Joannicolo Vicentino. But the most beautiful were executed later by Domenico Beccafumi of Siena, after the death of Parmigiano, as will be related at greater length in the Life of Domenico.
Not otherwise than worthy of praise, also, is the method that has been invented of making engravings more easily than with the burin, although they do not come out so clear--that is, with aquafortis, first laying on the copper a coat of wax, varnish, or oil color, and then drawing the design with an iron instrument that has a sharp point to cut through the wax, varnish, or color, whichever it may be, after which one pours over it the aquafortis, which eats into the copper in such a manner that it leaves the lines of the design hollow, and impressions can be taken from it. With this method Francesco Parmigiano executed many little things, which are full of grace, such as the Nativity of Christ, a Dead Christ with the Maries weeping over Him, and one of the tapestries executed for the Chapel after the designs of Raffaello, with many other works.
After these masters, fifty sheets with varied and beautiful landscapes were produced by Battista, a painter of Vicenza, and of Verona. In Flanders, Hieronymus Cock has executed engravings of the liberal arts; and in Rome, engravings have been done of the Visitation in the Pace, painted by Fra Sebastiano Veneziano, of that by Francesco Salviati in the Misericordia, and of the Feast of Testaccio; besides many works that have been engraved in Venice by the painter Battista Franco, and by many other masters.
But to return to the simple copper plate engravings; after Marc' Antonio had executed the many works that have been mentioned above, Rosso arrived in Rome, and Baviera persuaded him that he should have some of his works engraved; wherefore he commissioned Gian Jacopo Caraglio of Verona, who was one of the most skilful craftsmen of that day, and who sought with all diligence to imitate Marc' Antonio, to engrave a lean anatomical figure of his own, which holds a death's head in the hand, and is seated on a serpent, while a swan is singing. This plate succeeded so well, that the same Rosso afterwards caused engravings to be made, on plates of considerable size, of some of the Labours of Hercules: the Slaying of the Hydra, the Combat with Cerberus, the Killing of Cacus, the Breaking of the Bull's Horns, the Battle with the Centaurs, and the Centaur Nessus carrying off Deianira. And these plates proved to be so beautiful and so well engraved, that the same Jacopo executed, likewise after the design of Rosso, the story of the daughters of Pierus, who, for seeking to contend with the Muses and to sing in competition with them, were transformed into crows.
Baviera having then caused Rosso to draw twenty Gods in niches, with their attributes, for a book, these were engraved by Gian Jacopo Caraglio in a very beautiful and graceful manner; and also, not long afterwards, their Transformations; but of these Rosso did not make the drawings, save only of two, for he had a difference with Baviera, and Baviera had ten of them executed by Perino del Vaga. The two by Rosso were the Rape of Proserpine and the Transformation of Philyra into a horse; and all were engraved with such diligence by Caraglio, that they have always been prized. Caraglio afterwards began for Rosso the Rape of the Sabines, which would have been a very rare work, but, the sack of Rome supervening, it could not be finished, for Rosso went away, and the plates were all lost. And although this work has since come into the hands of the printers, it has proved a miserable failure, for the engraving has been done by one who had no knowledge of the art, and thought only of making money.
After this, Caraglio engraved for Francesco Parmigiano a plate of the Marriage of Our Lady, and other works by the same master; and then another plate for Tiziano Vecelli, which was very beautiful, of a Nativity that Tiziano had formerly painted. This Gian Jacopo Caraglio, after having executed many copper plates, being an ingenious spirit, gave his attention to engraving cameos and crystals, in which he became no less excellent than he had been in the engraving of copper plates. And since then, having entered the service of the King of Poland, he has occupied himself no longer with engraving on copper, now in his opinion a mean art, but with the cutting of gems, with working in incavo, and with architecture; for which having been richly rewarded by the liberality of that King, he has spent large sums in investments in the territory of Parma, in order to be able to retire in his old age to the enjoyment of his native country among his friends and disciples, after the labours of so many years.
After these masters came another excellent copper plate engraver, Lamberto Suave, by whose hand are thirteen plates of Christ and the twelve Apostles, in which the execution of the engraving is perfect in its delicacy. If Lamberto had possessed a more thorough mastery of design in addition to the industry, patience, and diligence that he showed in all other points, he would have been marvellous in every respect; as may be perceived clearly from a little sheet of S. Paul writing, and from a larger sheet with the story of the Raising of Lazarus, in which there are most beautiful things to be seen. Worthy of note, in particular, are the hollow rock in the cavern which he represented as the burial place of Lazarus, and the light that falls upon some figures, all of which is executed with beautiful and fanciful invention.
No little ability, likewise, has been shown in this profession by Giovan Battista Mantovano, a disciple of Giulio Romano; among other works, in a Madonna who has the Child in her arms and the moon under her feet, and in some very beautiful heads with helmet-crests after the antique; in two sheets, in which are a captain of mercenaries on foot and one on horseback, and also in a sheet wherein is a Mars in armor, who is seated upon a bed, while Venus gazes on a Cupid whom she is suckling, which has in it much that is good. Very fanciful, also, are two large sheets by the hand of the same master, in which is the Burning of Troy, executed with extraordinary invention, design, and grace. These and many other sheets by the same hand are signed with the letters "J.B.M."
And no less excellent than any of those mentioned above has been Enea Vico of Parma, who engraved the well-known copper plate of the Rape of Helen by Rosso, and also another plate after the design of the same painter, of Vulcan with some Loves, who are fashioning arrows at his forge, while the Cyclopes are also at work, which was truly a most beautiful engraving. He executed the Leda of Michelagnolo on another, and also an Annunciation after the design of Tiziano, the story of Judith that Michelagnolo painted in the Chapel, the portrait of Duke Cosimo de' Medici as a young man, in full armor, after the drawing by Bandinelli, and likewise the portrait of Bandinelli himself; and then the Contest of Cupid and Apollo in the presence of all the Gods. And if Enea had been maintained and rewarded for his labors by Bandinelli, he would have engraved many other beautiful plates for him. Afterwards, Francesco, a protege of the Salviati, and an excellent painter, being in Florence, and assisted by the liberality of Duke Cosimo, commissioned Enea to engrave the large plate of the Conversion of S. Paul, full of horses and soldiers, which was held to be very beautiful, and gave Enea a great name. The same Enea then executed the portrait of Signor Giovanni de' Medici, father of Duke Cosimo, with an ornament full of figures. He engraved, also, the portrait of the Emperor Charles V, with an ornament covered with appropriate Victories and trophies, for which he was rewarded by His Majesty and praised by all; and on another plate, very well engraved, he represented the victory that the Emperor gained on the Elbe. For Doni he executed some heads from nature in the manner of medallions, with beautiful ornaments: King Henry of France, Cardinal Bembo, Messer Lodovico Ariosto, the Florentine Gello, Messer Lodovico Domenichi, Signora Laura Terracina, Messer Cipriano Morosino, and Doni himself. He also engraved for Don Giulio Clovio, a most excellent illuminator, a plate of a S. George on horseback who is slaying the Dragon, in which, although it was, one might say, one of the first works that he engraved, he acquitted himself very well.
Afterwards, being a man of lofty genius, and desiring to pass on to greater and more honorable undertakings, Enea applied himself to the study of antiquities, and in particular of ancient medals, of which he has published several books in engraving, wherein are the true effigies of many Emperors and their wives, with every kind of inscription and reverse that could bring all who delight in them to a clear understanding of their stories; for which he has rightly won great praise, as he still does. And those who have found fault with him for his books of medals have been in the wrong, for whoever shall consider the labors that he has performed, and how useful and beautiful these are, must perforce excuse him, even though he may have erred in a few matters of little importance; and such errors, which are not committed save from faulty information, from a too ready credulity, or from having opinions differing from others with some show of reason, are worthy to be excused, seeing that Aristotle, Pliny, and many others have been guilty of the like.
Enea also designed to the common satisfaction and benefit of all mankind fifty costumes of different nations, such as were worn by men and women, peasants and citizens, in Italy, in France, in Spain, in Portugal, in England, in Flanders, and in other parts of the world; which was an ingenious work, both fanciful and beautiful. He executed, also, a genealogical tree of all the Emperors, which was a thing of great beauty. And finally, after much toil and travailing, he now lives in repose under the shadow of Alfonso II, Duke of Ferrara, for whom he has made a genealogical tree of all the Marquises and Dukes of the House of Este. For all these works and many others that he has executed, as he still continues to do, I have thought it right to make this honorable record of him among so many other men of the arts.
Many others have occupied themselves with copper plate engraving, who, although they have not attained to such perfection, have none the less benefited the world with their labours, by bringing many scenes and other works of excellent masters into the light of day, and by thus giving the means of seeing the various inventions and manners of the painters to those who are not able to go to the places where the principal works are, and conveying to the ultramontanes a knowledge of many things that they did not know. And although many plates have been badly executed through the avarice of the printers, eager more for gain than for honour, yet in certain others, besides those that have been mentioned, there may be seen something of the good; as in the large design of the Last Judgment of Michelagnolo Buonarroti on the front wall of the Papal Chapel, engraved by Giorgio Mantovano, and in the engravings by Giovan Battista de' Cavalieri of the Crucifixion of S. Peter and the Conversion of S. Paul painted in the Pauline Chapel at Rome. This Giovan Battista has also executed copper plate engravings, besides other designs, of the Meditation of S. John the Baptist, of the Deposition from the Cross that Daniello Ricciarelli of Volterra painted in a chapel in the Trinita' at Rome, of a Madonna with many Angels, and of a vast number of other works. Moreover, many things taken from Michelagnolo have been engraved by others at the commission of Antonio Lanferri, who has employed printers for the same purpose. These have published books of all the kinds of fishes, and also the Phaethon, the Tityus, the Ganymede, the Archers, the Bacchanalia, the Dream, the Pieta', and the Crucifix, all done by Michelagnolo for the Marchioness of Pescara; and, in addition, the four Prophets of the Chapel and other scenes and drawings have been engraved and published, but executed so badly, that I think it well to be silent as to the names of those engravers and printers.
But I must not be silent about the above-mentioned Antonio Lanferri and , for they, as well as others, have employed many young men to engrave plates after original drawings by the hands of a vast number of masters, insomuch that it is better to say nothing of these works, lest it should become wearisome. And in this manner have been published, among other plates, grotesques, ancient temples, cornices, bases, capitals, and many other suchlike things, with all their measurements.
Seeing everything reduced to a miserable manner, and moved by compassion, Sebastiano Serlio, an architect of Bologna, has engraved on wood and copper two books of architecture, in which, among other things, are thirty doors of the Rustic Order, and twenty in a more delicate style; which book is dedicated to King Henry of France. Antonio L'Abacco, likewise, has published plates in a beautiful manner of all the notable antiquities of Rome, with their measurements, executed with great mastery and with very subtle engraving by ... [SIC] Perugino. Nor has less been accomplished in this field by the architect Jacopo Barozzo of Vignola, who in a book of copper plate engravings has shown with simple rules how to enlarge or to diminish in due proportion every part of the five Orders of Architecture, a work most useful in that art, for which we are much indebted to him; even as we are to Giovanni Cugini of Paris for his engravings and writings on architecture.
In Rome, besides the masters named above, Niccolo' Beatricio of Lorraine has given so much attention to engraving with the burin, that he has executed many plates worthy of praise; such as two pieces of sarcophagi with battles of horsemen, engraved on copper, and other plates full of various animals very well executed, and a scene showing the Widow's Daughter being restored to life by Jesus Christ, engraved in a bold manner from the design of Girolamo Mosciano, a painter of Brescia. The same master has engraved an Annunciation from a drawing by the hand of Michelagnolo, and has also executed prints of the Navicella of mosaic that Giotto made in the portico of S. Pietro.
From Venice, likewise, have come many most beautiful engravings on wood and on copper; on wood, after Tiziano, many landscapes, a Nativity of Christ, a S. Jerome, and a S. Francis; and on copper the Tantalus, the Adonis, and many other plates, which have been engraved by Giulio Bonasone of Bologna, together with some others by Raffaello, by Giulio Romano, by Parmigiano, and by all the other masters whose drawings he has been able to obtain. And Battista Franco, a painter of Venice, has engraved, partly with the burin and partly with aquafortis, many works by the hands of various masters, such as the Nativity of Christ, the Adoration of the Magi, the Preaching of S. Peter, some plates from the Acts of the Apostles, and many stories from the Old Testament. So far, indeed, has this practice of making prints been carried, that those who make a profession of it keep draughtsmen continually employed in copying every beautiful work as it appears, and put it into prints. Wherefore there came from France, after the death of Rosso, engravings of all the work by his hand that could be found, such as Clelia with the Sabine women passing the river; some masks after the manner of the Fates, executed for King Francis; a bizarre Annunciation; a Dance of ten women; and King Francis advancing alone into the Temple of Jupiter, leaving behind him Ignorance and other similar figures, which were executed during the lifetime of Rosso by the copper plate engraver Renato. And many more have been drawn and engraved since Rosso's death; among many other works, all the stories of Ulysses, and, to say nothing of the rest, vases, chandeliers, candelabra, salt-cellars, and a vast number of other suchlike things made in silver after designs of Rosso.
Luca Penni, also, has published engravings of two Satyrs giving drink to a Bacchus, a Leda taking the arrows from the quiver of a Cupid, Susannah in the Bath, and many other plates copied from the designs of the same Rosso and of Francesco Primaticcio of Bologna, now Abbot of S. Martin in France. And among these engravings are the Judgment of Paris, Abraham sacrificing Isaac, a Madonna, Christ marrying S. Catharine, Jove changing Callisto into a bear, the Council of the Gods, Penelope weaving with her women, and other things without number, engraved on wood, and executed for the most part with the burin; by reason of which the wits of the craftsmen have become very subtle, insomuch that little figures have been engraved so well, that it would not be possible to give them greater delicacy. And who can see without marvelling the works of Francesco Marcolini of Forli'? Who, besides other things, printed the book of the Garden of Thoughts from woodblocks, placing at the beginning an astrologer's sphere and a head of himself after the design of Giuseppe Porta of Castelnuovo della Garfagnana; in which book are various fanciful figures, such as Fate, Envy, Calamity, Timidity, Praise, and many others of the same kind, which were held to be most beautiful. Not otherwise than praiseworthy, also, were the figures that Gabriele Giolito, a printer of books, placed in the Orlando Furioso, for they were executed in a beautiful manner of engraving. And even such, likewise, were the eleven large anatomical plates that were done by Andrea Vessalio after the drawings of Johann of Calcar, a most excellent Flemish painter, which were afterwards copied on smaller sheets and engraved on copper by Valverde, who wrote on anatomy after Vessalio.
Next, among the many plates that have issued from the hands of Flemings within the last ten years, very beautiful are some drawn by one Michele, a painter, who worked for many years in two chapels that are in the Church of the Germans at Rome. These plates contain the story of Moses and the Serpents, and thirty-two stories of Psyche and Love, which are held to be most beautiful. Hieronymus Cock, also a Fleming, has engraved a large plate after the invention and design of Martin Heemskerk, of Delilah cutting off the locks of Samson; and not far away is the Temple of the Philistines, in which, the towers having fallen, one sees ruin and destruction in the dead, and terror in the living, who are taking to flight. The same master has executed in three smaller plates the Creation of Adam and Eve, the Eating of the Fruit, and the Angel driving them out of Paradise; and in four other plates of the same size, in the first the Devil imprinting avarice and ambition into the heart of man, and in the others all the passions that result from those two. There may also be seen twenty-seven plates of the same size by his hand, with stories from the Old Testament after the expulsion of Adam from Paradise, drawn by Martin in a bold, well-practised, and most resolute manner, which is very similar to the Italian. Hieronymus afterwards engraved six round plates with the history of Susannah, and twenty-three other stories from the Old Testament, similar to those of Abraham already mentioned--namely, six plates with the story of David, eight plates with that of Solomon, four with that of Balaam, and five with those of Judith and Susannah. And from the New Testament he engraved twenty-nine plates, beginning with the Annunciation of the Virgin, and continuing down to the whole Passion and Death of Jesus Christ. He also engraved, after the drawings of the same Martin, the seven Works of Mercy, and the story of the rich Lazarus and the poor Lazarus, and four plates with the Parable of the Samaritan wounded by thieves, with four other plates of the Parable of the Talents, written by S. Matthew in his eighteenth chapter.
At the time when Hans Liefrinck executed in competition with him ten plates of the Life and Death of S. John the Baptist, he engraved the Twelve Tribes on an equal number of plates; Reuben upon a hog, representing Sensuality; Simeon with a sword as a symbol of Homicide; and in like manner the other heads of Tribes with attributes appropriate to the nature of each. He then executed ten plates, engraved with greater delicacy, with the stories and acts of David, from the time of his being anointed by Samuel to his going before Saul; and he engraved six other plates with the story of how Amnon became enamored of his sister Tamar and ravished her, and the death of that same Amnon. And not long afterwards he executed ten plates of similar size with the history of Job; and from thirteen chapters of the Proverbs of Solomon he drew subjects for five plates of the same kind. He also engraved the story of the Magi; and then, on six plates, the Parable that is in the twelfth chapter of S. Matthew, of those who for various reasons refused to go to the King's Feast, and of him who went without having a wedding garment; and six plates of equal size with some of the acts of the Apostles. And in eight similar plates he engraved figures of women of perfect excellence, in various costumes: six from the Old Testament--Jael, Ruth, Abigail, Judith, Esther, and Susannah; and two from the New--Mary the Virgin, Mother of Jesus Christ, and Mary Magdalene.
After these works he carried out the engraving of the Triumphs of Patience in six plates, with various things of fancy. In the first, in a chariot, is Patience, who has in her hand a standard, on which is a rose among thorns. In the second may be seen a burning heart, beaten by three hammers, upon an anvil; and the chariot of this second plate is drawn by two figures—namely, by Desire, who has wings upon the shoulders, and by Hope, who has an anchor in the hand, and behind them Fortune, with her wheel broken, is led as a prisoner. In the next plate is Christ on a chariot, with the standard of the Cross and of His Passion, with the Evangelists at the corners in the form of animals; and this chariot is drawn by two lambs, and has behind it four prisoners--the Devil, the World, or rather, the Flesh, Sin, and Death. In another Triumph is Isaac, nude, upon a camel; on the banner that he holds in his hand are a pair of prisoner's irons; and behind him is drawn the altar with the ram, the knife, and the fire. In the next plate he made Joseph riding in triumph on an ox crowned with ears of corn and fruits, with a standard on which is a beehive; and the prisoners that are led behind him are Anger and Envy, who are devouring a heart. He engraved in another Triumph David on a lion, with the harp, and with a standard in his hand, on which is a bit; and behind him is Saul as a prisoner, and Shimei, with his tongue protruding. In another plate is Tobias riding in triumph on an ass, and holding in his hand a banner, on which is a fountain; and behind him Poverty and Blindness, bound, are led as prisoners. And in the last of the six Triumphs is S. Stephen the Proto-martyr, who is riding in triumph on an elephant, and has a standard with a figure of Charity; and the prisoners behind him are his persecutors. All these were inventions full of fancy, and very ingenious; and they were all engraved by Hieronymus Cock, whose hand is very bold, sure, and resolute.
The same master engraved a plate of Fraud and Avarice, fantastic and beautiful, and another very lovely plate of a Feast of Bacchanals, with children dancing. On another he represented Moses passing across the Red Sea, according as it had been painted by Agnolo Bronzino, a painter of Florence, in the upper chapel in the Palace of the Duke of Florence; and in competition with him, also after the design of Bronzino, Giorgio Mantovano engraved a Nativity of Jesus Christ, which was very beautiful. After these works, Hieronymus engraved twelve plates of the victories, battles, and deeds of arms of Charles V, for him who was the inventor of the subjects; and for Verese, a painter and a great master of perspective in those parts, twenty plates with various buildings. For Hieronymus Bosch he executed a plate of S. Martin, with a barque full of Devils in the most bizarre forms. And he made another of an alchemist who loses all his possessions, distilling away his brains and consuming all that he has in various ways, insomuch that in the end he takes refuge in the hospital with his wife and children; which plate was designed for him by a painter, who caused him to engrave the Seven Mortal Sins, with Demons of various forms, which was a fantastic and laughable work. He also engraved a Last Judgment; an old man who is seeking with a lantern for peace among the wares of the world, and finds it not; likewise a great fish that is devouring some little fishes; a figure of Carnival enjoying the pleasures of the table with many others, and driving Lent away, and another of Lent driving away Carnival; and so many other whimsical and fantastic inventions, that it would be wearisome to attempt to speak of them all.
Many other Flemings have imitated the manner of Albrecht Duerer with the greatest care and subtlety, as may be seen from their engravings, and in particular from those of ...[SIC] who has engraved in little figures four stories of the Creation of Adam, four of the lives of Abraham and of Lot, and four others of Susannah, which are very beautiful. In like manner, G... P...[SIC] has engraved the Seven Works of Mercy in seven small round plates, eight stories taken from the Books of Kings, Regulus placed in the barrel filled with nails, and an Artemisia, which is a plate of great beauty. J... B...[SIC] has executed figures of the four Evangelists, which are so small that it seems scarcely possible that he could have done them; and also five other very fine plates, in the first of which is a Virgin drawn into the grave by Death in all the freshness of her youth, and in the second is Adam, in the third a peasant, in the fourth a Bishop, and in the fifth a Cardinal, each, like the Virgin, called by Death to his last account. And in some others are many Germans going on parties of pleasure with their wives, and some beautiful and fantastic Satyrs. By ... [SIC] are plates of the four Evangelists, engraved with great care, and no less beautiful than are twelve stories of the Prodigal Son executed with much diligence by the hand of M.... And, finally, Franz Floris, a painter famous in those parts, has produced a great number of works and drawings which have since been engraved, for the most part by Hieronymus Cock, such as ten plates of the Labors of Hercules, a large plate with all the activities of the life of man, another with the Horatii and Curiatii engaged in combat in the lists, the Judgment of Solomon, and the Battle between Hercules and the Pygmies. The same master, also, has engraved a Cain who has killed Abel, over whose body Adam and Eve are weeping; an Abraham who is about to sacrifice Isaac on the altar, and a vast number of other plates, so full of variety and invention, that it is indeed marvellous to think of all that has been done in engravings on copper and wood. Lastly, it is enough to draw attention to the engravings of the portraits of the Painters, Sculptors, and Architects in this our book, which were drawn by Giorgio Vasari and his pupils, and engraved by Maestro Cristofano ...,[SIC] who has executed in Venice, as he still continues to do, a vast number of works worthy of record.
In conclusion, for all the assistance that the ultramontanes have received from seeing the various Italian manners by means of engravings, and that the Italians have received from having seen those of the ultramontanes and foreigners, thanks should be rendered, for the most part, to Marc' Antonio Bolognese, in that, besides the circumstance that he played a great part in the beginning of this profession, as has been related, there has not as yet been one who has much surpassed him, although some few have equalled him in certain points. This Marc' Antonio died at Bologna, not long after his departure from Rome. In our book are some drawings of Angels by his hand, done with the pen, and some other very beautiful sheets drawn from the apartments that Raffaello da Urbino painted. In one of these apartments Marc' Antonio, as a young man, was portrayed by Raffaello in one of those grooms who are carrying Pope Julius II, in that part where the High Priest Onias is praying.
And let this be the end of the Lives of Marc' Antonio Bolognese and of all the other engravers of prints mentioned above, of whom I have thought it right to give this long but necessary account, in order to satisfy not only the students of our arts, but also all those who delight in works of that kind.