Collection of optical views Galerie
Napoléon

Optical view of Nanjing (China)

XVIIIth century optical view in original watercolors. Original copper plate engraving on laid paper with watermark heightened with watercolor at that time. Published by Basset in Paris circa 1770

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1770Time of Louis XV
  • Date : circa 1770
  • Period : 18th century
  • Time : Louis XV
  • Technique : Strong water etching
  • Support : Laid paper
  • Publisher : Basset
  • Place of publication : Paris
  • Passepartout : 50.0 x 65.0 cm
  • Sheet : 32.0 x 48.0 cm
  • Plate : 24.0 x 37.0 cm
  • Inventory number : FR-3021
500.00€
(Frame not included)
  • Free shipping costs
  • Shipment within 24H
  • Online tracking
  • Certificate of authenticity
  • Passepartout included
  • Portfolio exacompta

Original title

Vue perspective de la grande Rue de Nanquin ancienne Ville de la Chine

Mentions

A Paris chez Basset rue S. Jacques

Description

XVIIIth century optical view in original watercolors. Original copper plate engraving on laid paper with watermark heightened with watercolor at that time. Published by Basset in Paris circa 1770, depicting a view of Nanjing (China).

During the 18th century, several renowned establishments in Paris, London (England), Augsburg (Germany) and Bassano (Italy) were specialized in the creation of these optical views. They could be viewed alone or through a zograscope, a wooden foot surmounted by a lens which enlarged the image and accentuated the perspective effect. They could also be placed in optical boxes, the spectator then looked inside the box through the lens. This distraction was greatly appreciated in the 18th century in the salons of the bourgeoisie and the nobility as in the countryside thanks to the hawkers.

These etchings are nowadays exhibited in museums around the world and extremely appreciated by collectors and decorators for their historical interest and their high decorative value.

Museums & Archives

The Bibliothèque nationale de France owns a copy of this optical view in its collections. For more details on this print please consult the site : Vue perspective de la grande rue de nanquin ancienne ville de la chine

Condition report

Stains in the lower right angle

This print is listed in these categories :

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Shipment within 24H Certificate of authenticity
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Secured shipment Secured packaging

Nanjing

Nanjing is one of the oldest cities in southern China. According to legend, Fu Chai, the lord of the country of Wu, founded the first site of the city, Yecheng in 495 BC. In -473, the country of Yue conquered the country of Wu and founded the city of Yuecheng in the vicinity of the current location of the Zhonghua Bridge. In -333, after having eliminated the country of Yue, the country of Chu founded Jinling Yi in the north-western part of the current city. Since then, many destructions and reconstructions have marked the history of Nanjing.

Nanjing became a capital in 229, when Sun Quan of the kingdom of Wu moved its capital to Jianye, as an extension of Jinling Yi in 211, during the period of the Three Kingdoms. After the Cing Wu invasion, the nobles and the wealthy of the Jin dynasty escaped to the other side of the Yangzi Jiang and established their capital in Nanjing, then called Jiankang. Nanjing was then the capital of southern China during the period of North-South division, until the Sui dynasty reunited China and destroyed the whole city.

The city was rebuilt during the Tang dynasty, and became again capital during the episodic reign of the kingdom of the Tang of the South (937-975). The Jiankang industry developed to reach its peak during the Song Dynasty, although constantly threatened by foreign invaders. After the Mongol invasion, the city was consolidated as a textile technological pole.

After having established itself as a winner following the divisions of the war period between lords of the end of the Yuan dynasty, Zhu Yuanzhang, the founder of the Ming dynasty, again established the capital in Nanjing in 1368, adopting for the first time his modern name, Nanjing (Nanjing). He built what turned out to be the largest city in the world at the time, with 200,000 workers who completed the project after 21 years. The current wall of Nanjing dates from this period: it is the largest urban wall in the world that still remains. In 1403, the capital was transferred from Nanjing to Beijing.

The Optical View

The Galerie Napoléon is pleased to propose to you this strong water etching printed 251 years ago (around 1770).
As for all the antique prints in our catalogue, this optical view Vue perspective de la grande Rue de Nanquin ancienne Ville de la Chine dating from 1770 is dispatched worldwide within 24H in a secured packaging, accompanied by its certificate of authenticity guaranteeing the name of the artists (draughtsman, engraver, editor), the impression process used (Strong water) and its date (1770).

In order to guarantee a perfect conservation in time, this strong water etching is dispatched, ready to be framed, under color passepartout (manufactured without acid in the pulp for a neutral pH) on a cream mountboard made from carton bois (also acid free & neutral pH), in a luxurious portfolio.

History of the Optical views

At the apogee of the mode for optical views, between 1750 and 1790, four European cities specialized in their edition: Paris (France), London (England), Augsburg (Germany) and Bassano (Italy).

Optical views are prized in very different social circles : pleasant recreation in aristocratic salons, the views are admired in beautiful and richly decorated optical boxes which are real works of art. The show was transformed into a real scientific experiment. But the optical views also entertained the people who were in a hurry when a hawker set up a box on a market and began to narrate the extraordinary events that had taken place in a more or less distant and inaccessible country.

There are three categories in the production of optical views.

  • Topographic views: Cities, Monuments, Ports, Distant regions, reproduced with more or less accuracy, depending on the documents available to the engraver. It is obvious that the authors of these prints had not seen these territories. They therefore recomposed these landscapes by compiling various engravings and drawings, which explains many fantasies.
  • The historical scenes : Inaugurations, Coronations, Battles, Fires or Natural disasters form a subject that the people are fond of.
  • Views with a religious or moralizing theme. For educational value, these prints were mainly produced by Parisian publishers in the rue Saint-Jacques.

Our guarantee

With more than 20 years experience and a catalogue of more than 30.000 antique prints and historical documents dating from the 14th to the 19th century, the Galerie Napoléon, parisian antique dealer's gallery, is one of the world references in the field of antique prints,etchings and antique graphic arts.

In addition to thousands of impassioned of antique prints throughout the world, the Galerie Napoléon is honoured to count among its customers : national archives, museums, historical monuments and important home designer companies. All attracted by the extraordinary diversity of its catalogue and the quality and speed of its services.

This experience allows us to guarantee to each one of our customers the authenticity of the antiques in our catalogue and the shipment of their orders within 24 hours.

Secured shipment

Les commandes sont offerts pour toute commande supérieure à 50EUR pour la France, 70EUR pour l'union européenne (et Suisse) et 90EUR pour le reste du monde.

Les frais de port sont offerts pour toute commande supérieure à 50EUR pour la France, 70EUR pour l'union européenne (et Suisse) et 90EUR pour le reste du monde.

Pour les commandes inférieures à ces montants, les frais de port sont de 6EUR pour la France, 8EUR pour l'union européenne (et Suisse) et 10EUR pour le reste du monde.

Secured payment

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  • European bank transfer SEPA (IBAN/BIC/SWIFT)
  • Bank check (drawn on a french bank)
  • Administrative order (Museums, Universities, Town Halls, Ministries...)
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