a New Proof State of the Battle of the Romans and the Sabines
Lisa Pon

The John Rylands Library’s recently rediscovered Spencer Album 8050 contains a proof state of the Battle of the Romans and the Sabines, an engraving pivotal in the short-lived but ambitious collaboration between Jacopo Caraglio (1500–65) and Rosso Fiorentino (1495–1540) in Rome. This proof impression was first printed in black ink, and then densely covered with hand-drawn ink. A comparison between the new proof state and previously identified states of the engraving using a novel technical approach involving long-wave infrared light to isolate the printed lines optically indicates that the Spencer proof state precedes any other known state of the engraving. The use of penwork and printing on this early proof and subsequent proof states demonstrates how Caraglio and Rosso saw drawing and printing as intimately connected, iterative steps in the print’s production.

Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
Lisa Pon and Edward H. Wouk

This article and checklist present the contents of the Spencer Album of Marcantonio Raimondi prints, long considered to be lost. By examining its composition and tracing its provenance from the Spencer collection at Althorp House to the John Rylands Library, Manchester, we offer new insight into how attitudes toward Marcantonio Raimondi‘s work evolved during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, particularly in Great Britain. Our article also explores Victorian collecting practices and the importance of the graphic arts for Mrs Rylands‘s vision for the Library to be dedicated to her late husband‘s memory.

Bulletin of the John Rylands Library