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Ulysses’ Fight with Irus
Müller, Jan Harmansz -Engraver-; Cornelisz. van Haarlem, Cornelis -Inventor-; Goltzius, Heindrick -Publisher-
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Müller, Jan Harmansz - Engraver
Amsterdam, 1571 - Amsterdam, 1628 - Engraver
Cornelisz. van Haarlem, Cornelis - Inventor
Haarlem, 1562 - Haarlem, 1638 - Inventor
Goltzius, Heindrick - Publisher
Bracht-am-Niederrhein, 1558 - Haarlem, 1617 - Publisher

Ulysses’ Fight with Irus

1589. Burin on laid paper.
Not on display

This work illustrates an episode from the Odyssey in which young Irus challenges Ulysses to a fight, which the latter wins in presence of the inhabitants of Ithaca. Ulysses stands with his back to the viewer and the unconscious body of Irus lies at his feet. While Jan Harmensz. Muller’s name does not appear on this print, he is traditionally considered its engraver. The work is modeled after a panel painted in oils by Carnelis van Haarlem, now in a private English collection. It is a fine example of the mannerism that developed in the Netherlands, with a taste for exaggeratedly muscular and foreshortened figures in settings containing classicist architecture and surroundings halfway between Italian classicism and Northern costumbrismo. This print from the Museo del Prado was part of an album belonging to the VII Marquis of El Carpio, don Gaspar de Haro y Guzmán (1629-1687), and is mentioned in the inventory that his secretary, Juan Vélez de León, carried out in Madrid in 1687: N 12. Un altro [album] dell`istessagrandezza con copertacremese con figure intagliate da Enrico Golzio. The album’s original red-leather binding with gold adornments is also at the Museo del Prado and bears the title Opere del Golzio e del Bloemart on its spine. The frontispiece has the album’s title as well as the observation that the works were assembled by painter Giuseppe Ghezzi (1634-1721): OPERE / DI / ARRIGO GOLZIO / ET / ABRAMO BLOEMART / RACCOLTE / PER IL SUO STUDIO / DA / GIUSEPPE GHEZZ.. Ghezzi played a decisive role in shaping the Marquis of El Carpio’s collections.


Technical data

Inventory number
Müller, Jan Harmansz -Engraver-; Cornelisz. van Haarlem, Cornelis -Inventor-; Goltzius, Heindrick -Publisher-
Ulysses’ Fight with Irus
Laid paper
Height of the plate mark: 425 mm; Width of the plate mark: 333 mm; Alto segundo soporte: 476 mm; Ancho segundo soporte: 366 mm
VII Marquis of El Carpio’s collections; Margarita de Dios Cano; Acquired 2015.

Bibliography +

Filedt Kok, Jan Piet (comp.); Hinterding, Erik (Ap.); Luijten, Ger y Schuckman, Ch. (eds.), The Muller Dynasty. Part II. The new Hollstein Dutch & Flemish etchings, engravings and w..., XII. Parte II, Sound & Vision Publishers, Rotterdam, 1999, pp. 113, nº 30.

Goddard, Stephen H. y Ganz, James A., Goltzius & The Third Dimension, Williamstown, Ma, 2001, pp. 28, il. 26.

Museo Nacional del Prado, Memoria de actividades 2015, Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, 2016, pp. 126-128.

Filigree +

Motive: Esfera terrestre

Other inventories +

Inv. Nuevas Adquisiciones (iniciado en 1856). Núm. 2898.

Inscriptions +

C. Cornelii Harlemensis Invent. HGoltzius exeud. [sic]
Lettered in the plate. Front, lower right corner

Aº 1589.
Lettered in the plate. Front, lower right corner

Inscribed in pen and brown ink. Back, lower left corner

Aº 1589. / C. Cornelii Harlemensis Invent. HGoltzius exeud. [sic] // Sponsos Penelopes, et mendicabulum ut Irum / Audyt a Troia rediens Ithacensis ulysses // Non tulit indignum facinus, / seq [ue] ipse recingens / Mendicante habitu, reiectoq[ue] [i]nde torosa // Membra revelavit, cunctisqu[ue] stupentibus Irum / Guttere colliso stravit Laertius heros. // Post potitur votis, turba strata q[ue] procorum / Coniugis amplexu gaudet securus anïat [ae] // Multa diu passo tandem victoria cedit. F. E. [Franciscus Estius]
Lettered in the plate. Front, lower area

In pen and gray ink. Back, lower area

Update date: 30-09-2022 | Registry created on 01-09-2015

Other works by Müller, Jan Harmansz; Cornelisz. van Haarlem, Cornelis; Goltzius, Heindrick

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