Caesar's triumphal parade after Andrea Mantegna
These fine double plate engravings were executed by the Dutch engraver Cornelius Huyberts in London ca 1696. They are after Andrea Mantegna's series of nine oil paintings executed for the Gonzaga Ducal Palace in Mantua between 1484 and 1492. Mantegna's paintings, considered to be his finest work, were bought by Charles 1 in 1629, and have resided at Hampton Court since 1630. It was here doubtless that Huyberts found them after being commissioned to produce illustrations for a new edition of Caesar's "Commentaries", edited and annotated by Samuel Clark. Jacob Tonson was chosen to publish the volume. Tonson was publisher of Dryden and Milton , and was the first to acquire the copyright to Shakespeare's works after the "Statute of Anne", which placed copyright under the jurisdiction of goverment regulators. The finished volume published in 1712, which also included the famous early engraving of a bison, is considered one of the finest publications of the eighteenth century. The wonderfully designed plates are meant to follow in a continuous, processional, flow each plate separated by decorative pilasters. They are engraved on rag paper and protected in conservation rag mats.