At first glance appearing to be a print, this is in fact a painstakingly executed watercolor drawing, likely French I am thinking, measuring 16" by 20 1/2" (23 3/4" by 28" framed). The subject is of formal 18th century (earlier?) figures lounging on a classical Versailles-like terrace. They are surrounded by a balustrade, fountain, distant trees, and, in the immediate foreground, a border of oversized flowers. Interestingly, curiously, at bottom center, written in Latin, is the following: "NIMIRUM INSANIS PAUCIS VIDFATUR, EQ MAXIMA PARS HOMINUM MORBO JACTATUR EODEM". I googled this statement and found it to be by the Roman poet of the years just before the birth of Christ, Horace. It translates as "Undoubtedly he would appear insane to few, since the greater part of mankind is troubled with the same disease". The interpretation of this in conjunction with the drawing is not perhaps clear to modern day viewers. The drawing is in good condition for its age. There is overall even paper oxidation, some chemical oxidation of the pigment on the gentleman's sleeve, a barely noticeable near-crack in the paper to his left, and a small edge tear at upper right corner. Overall, an impressive old drawing.
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