Apollo & Daphne.
J. Smith fecit Londini. 1709.
Mezzotint in sepia ink, sheet 415 x 280mm. 16¼ x 11". Trimmed to plate. Crease through lower right corner. Some spotting.
Daphne, wearing a loose dress with one breast bared, her hands beginning to sprout leaves and branches, pursued by Apollo, nude and carrying a bow and quiver. In the foreground, nude and sitting on the ground, Daphne's father, ther river-god Peneus, beside whom is an upturned urn pouring out water that forms a river. From the series 'Tabulę novem coelo elaboratę ad totidem Titiani archetypos Nine Prints from the Celebrated Paintings of Titian, in the Duke of Marlboroughs Gallery, at Blenheim' by the famous early mezzotinter and re-publisher of older plates John Smith (1652 - 1743). The series of Smith mezzotints commonly known as 'The Loves of the Gods' are after a series of leather wall-hangings formerly in the Titian Room at Blenheim destroyed by fire in 1861. The attribution to Titian is uncertain, however, and was doubted as early as 1766 (see G. Scharf, Catalogue Raisonné, Blenheim Palace, London, 1862, pp. 83-92). The designs are based on prints by Caraglio after Pelino del Vaga and Rosso Fiorentino.
[Ref: 10496] £260.00