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Unmerciful Servant – 1585 – Set of 4 plates

The Unmerciful Servant


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SKU: E15854027 Category:


THE UNMERCIFUL SERVANT. Set of 4 plates, complete. FIRST STATE, published 1585, numbered. Original design artist: unknown. Original engraver: Hieronymus Wierix (attributed). Original publisher: Gerard de Jode. Reference: unknown. Clean, sharp impressions, cut to the plate and pasted onto heavier laid paper (not unusual) with wide margins, lightly washed during production to accentuate “antiquity.” Published, presumably for the first time, in de Jode’s 1585 masterpiece Sacrarum historiarum Veterus et Novi Testamentum. Each engraving size: 9.75″ x 7.6″. Full sheet: 14″ x 10.25″; sheet shows wavyness, not evident on plates. Minor spotting and staining on margins, not on the plates. On Pl 3, upper right corner was wrinkled during transfer to the larger paper (note window shutter). The story of the unmerciful servant, from Matthew 17, demonstrates the free forgiveness of God versus human tendency not to forgive even when we ourselves have been forgiven; compare with the Lord’s Prayer. Plates set in two museum-quality portfolios (landscape). Sold as a set only. An excellent example of Northern Renaissance Mannerism.

[Plate 1] The King Cancels His Servant’s Debt. [Plate 2] The King’s Servant Sends His Fellow Servant to Prison. [Plate 3] The King Summons His Servant. [Plate 4] The King Imprisons His Servant.

Engravings set in two museum-quality Bifold Portfolios (landscape), of linen cloth and solk moire, within archival sleeves. COA on premium “gold leaf” paper with gold seal and signature, set in an Archival Booklet.

Additional information


First State, presumably.






New Testament, Old Testament