antique prints, maps and watercolors

James Merigot. (Temple of the Sybill at Tivoli). Ruines de Rome. London 1796-98. Framed$495.00

click for detailed image Merigot Temple Sybil Tivoli.JPG

“Temple of the Sibill at Tivoli”

James Merigot (1760–1824) was a French engraver and publisher who is known for an attractive album of 62 aquatinted plates designed and engraved by Marigot himself. Titled A Select Collection of Views and Ruins in Rome and its Vicinity. Recently executed from Drawings made upon the spot. The plates are dated 1796-1798 and are printed on watermarked laid paper with descriptive text in English and French. Many similar books were produced during the late 18th and early 19th centuries due to the rise of Neo-classicism among the British populace. This work was unique in its particular attention to the accurate depiction of the Roman ruins. Merigot visited each of the ruins and drew them in person, making this historically significant as an important record both of Ancient Rome and the state of Roman ruins at the turn of the 19th century. It also is a reminder of how the city would have looked at the height of the Romantic era when Rome embodied many Romantic ideals, not least the traces of a vanished civilization.

"This temple derives much of its pleasing and picturesque effect from the peculiarity of its situation on the extreme edge of a rock, fronting the Cascade of Tivoli and looking over an extensive valley. By the elegance of its architecture, we may discover that it was the work of a good age. Palladio, who has given us a plan of it, conjectures that it was dedicated to Vesta. It is a rotunda, and was one encompassed with eighteen columns of travertine stone and detached from the building, of which only ten are present remain: they are fluted of the corinthian order, and are eighteen feet in height. The entablature, with which they are surmounted, is adorned with festoons, and supported by the heads of oxen. In  a round apartment in this temple strangers frequently amuse themselves with taking their repast: the vine-arbours which surround the place, contribute greatly to its agreeableness."

Uncolored sepia toned aquatint engraving.
Archivally framed 16 5/8 x 19 ¼ inches outside dimensions.
Excellent condition.