A fantastical hand colored steel engraving entitled 'Thistle' from the original 1847 English translation of Grandville's 'Les Fleurs Animees,' published in New York by R. Martin. Les Fleurs Animees is a fanciful, anthropomorphic look at flowers and plants with a surrealistic edge, evidenced in this print by a donkey or mule suitor all dressed for courting with a top hat, cane, and a watch key dangling from his waistcoat. Thistle holds two thorns as if they are banderillas and she is going to to plant them in the donkey as if he is a bull in a bull fight. Perhaps the accompanying poems and text revealed the plot of what looks to be an interesting narrative, or maybe this jackass is just looking for a tasty snack and Thistle is defending herself! Thistle is clad in a lovely tea length gown, her skirt, bodice, and sleeves covered with sharp thorns. She wears a lovely pink thistle flower hat.
The information below reads 'Thistle - Chardon - Carduns - Published by R. Martin - New York.'
This engaging print is ready to hang, beautifully framed in a gilt wood frame with an elaborate French triple mat - a luxe presentation that would cost many hundreds in any frame shop.
CONDITION is excellent antique. Some minor toning around the edges as is common in these nearly 170 year old steel engravings and a few minor spots of foxing. The original steel plates for this edition of Les Fleurs Animees were re-cut in New York with no differences to the engaging image save the removal of the signature. Measures 19 7/8 in. x 16 7/8 in. overall with a sight size inside the elaborate French Mat of 9 in. x 6 1/8 in. Weighs 4 lbs. 5 oz.
These wonderful old Grandville engravings are very popular and becoming more difficult to find. Treat yourself or someone special. Enjoy!
I have more of the wonderful antique engravings from this volume listed in my shop, all framed and matted identically. If you're interested in more than one (they look fabulous hung in pairs or larger groups) take a look at items RL-1175 ( Mirabilis ), RL-1177 ( Tulip ), RL-1179 ( Water-Lily ), and 1180 ( Pome-granate ). You can search on the item number ( for example, RL-1179 ) in the search box at the top of the page where you see the words 'What are you looking for?'