DE HOOGHE, Romeyn (1645 - 1708). Het Groote Stookhuis Der Princen dezes Tijds, in Europe. [?Haarlem: 1689].
Broadsheet (22 x 16 inches), illustrated with a fine engraved plate (9 4/8 x 14 inches) above the headline "The Great Laboratory of the Princes of these Times in Europe", and two columns of letterpress, 7-line woodcut initial, printed on the recto only (edges a little frayed, one or two pale stains).
Satirising the European political situation at the end of 1688, metaphorically comparing it to the chaos in an alchemist's laboratory. The engraving was first published in 1674, and considerably altered to apply to the events now being satirised: the centre (labelled 1) is the Imperial kiln surmounted by jars labelled Essek, Belgrade and Offen; in front of it, stands the duke of Bavaria, who "smashes a sphere decorated with a sun and a moon representing the Ottoman Empire; to the left, Charles of Lorraine (3), discharges a stream of Hungarians from a clyster pipe into the face of a Frenchman. Behind him (4) Count Imre Thököly, leader of a Hungarian uprising against the Empire, is defeated by Germany and struck on the head by an crucible representing the battle of Munkacs; he screams to Louis XIV for help, but in vain; the Emperor's generals (5) pursue him. In the centre, James II (6) with a damaged volume on his lap representing the Test Act, turns to Louis XIV (7) who points with his sword towards a broken still marked "Palts" (Palatinate). To the right of the image, in a hand that is not that of de Hooghe, the Pope (8) siezes the cardinal's hat of Wilhelm Egon von Fürstenberg, Bishop of Strasbourg (9). At the top of the scene, left of centre, a Swiss soldier (10) looks at a roundel with the fall of Phaeton while an Italian scrapes the rust from his stiletto. Beyond the scene with the Pope,William of Orange and his navy (11) arrive at the coast of England. Right of centre, a Saxon and a Brandenburger (12) attack French conquests represented by a burning building; from the broken still of the Palatinate (13) spill crucibles marked with the names of the cities of Speyer, Heidelberg, Philippsburg, Metz, Frankenthal, Oppenheim. At the bottom three further scenes: on the left (14), Lavardin fleeing in his carriage is thrown into a ditch when his horses take fright at the sight of the vengeful spirit of Rome; in the centre (15), the devil confronts Father Petre; on the right (16,) the ghost of Charles II warns his brother James II against the Jesuits and against the Empire; James's guards flee in terror" (British Library online).
Provenance: From the Krown & Spellman Collection, their sale, Heritage, 4th November, 2015 lot 45243
The first political iconographer of the Netherlands and its first great caricaturist...Romeyn de Hooghe was the most significant and prolific Netherlandish engraver in the second half of the seventeenth century (The Getty Institute)
Romeyn de Hooghe was born in Amsterdam in 1645 "and worked there until c.1680-1682, when he moved to Haarlem, where he died in 1708. For several Netherlandish provinces, he created interior architectural paintings and other works. In 1662 De Hooghe was invited by Adam Frans van der Meulen (1632-1690) to Paris, where he etched the baptism of the Dauphin in 1668. There he met King Jan III Sobieski of Poland and was knighted by him in 1675.
"De Hooghe painted, engraved, sculpted, designed medals, enameled, taught drawing school, and bought and sold art as a dealer. During the 1690s he made sculptures for the palace of Het Loo (1689-1692), designed and etched triumphal arches and medals for William III's entry into the Hague (1691), and designed the Haarlem market festival decorations for the peace celebration after the capture of Naumur (1695). His political, legal, and economic interests are evident in his writings: Schouburgh der Nederlandsche Veranderingen (1674), Æsopus in Europa (1701), Spiegel van Staat des Vereenigde Nederlanden (1706), and Hieroglyphica of Merkbeelden der oude Volkeren (1735), all of which he also illustrated. He was well-educated and may have attended law classes at a university in Harderwijk or Leiden.
"De Hooghe's earliest print, after Nicolas Berchem, was made around 1662. He created about 3500 images, most after his own designs, some after other artists, for himself and other authors, publishers, and printers. His plates were often retouched and adapted for later events, sometimes by De Hooghe, sometimes by others. He etched allegories and mythological scenes, portraits, caricatures, political satires, historical subjects, landscapes, topographical views (especially of Netherlandish cities), battle scenes, genre scenes, title pages, and book illustrations. From 1667-1691 he illustrated various newspapers: Hollandsche Mercurius, Princelycke almanach, Orangien Wonderspiegel.
"The first political iconographer of the Netherlands and its first great caricaturist, De Hooghe was closely associated with William of Orange. He repeatedly caricatured James II and Louis XIV, sometimes using pseudonyms on his most audacious images. He was an expressive master of physiognomy; and his original, lively style displayed the baroque fashion for spectacular and allegorical fantasy. Romeyn de Hooghe was the most significant and prolific Netherlandish engraver in the second half of the seventeenth century" (Anne-Marie Schaaf, The Getty Research Institute, Research Library). BM Satires 1154 dated as 1688; Hollstein 161; Muller 1863-1882 2770