When Corvids weren’t Protected Songbirds yet
Ridinger, Johann Elias (Ulm 1698 – Augsburg 1767). Crow Magpie and Raven Lodge! “There it stands before us as a mound with shooting holes from which is shot presently. Above on a pole the eagle owl sits, attacked and frightened by many birds, below lie and flap killed and wounded birds” (Th.). The mound surrounded by not just bare, but dead trees as vanitas symbols, in the background of the light winter scenery a larger village. On the left in the mound the entrance to the lodge secured with planks and door, in front horse skull and other bait. Etching with engraving. (1750.) Inscribed: Joh. El. Ridinger inv. del. sculps. et excud. Aug. Vind., otherwise in German as above and below. 9⅞ × 14¼ in (25.1 × 36.3 cm).
Thienemann & Schwarz 98; Ridinger catalog Darmstadt, 1999, III.20 with ill.; Ridinger catalog Kielce, 1997, 42; Deutsches Leben der Vergangenheit, Eugen Diederichs, Jena 1908, ill. 1488. – Sheet 30 of the instructive 30-sheet set Ways to trap the Wild Animals (“A rare set, of importance to those who are interested in the various methods of trapping wild animals”, Schwerdt 1928, and “Rarest of All Hunting Sets by Ridinger” [Halle, Munich 1928, LXVIII/323]), as a whole missing even in Helbing’s monumental offer Arbeiten von J. E. und M. E. Ridinger (catalog XXXIV , 1554 lots). – With 6 lines caption:
“ This is set in the field on a mound over which these birds usually take their flight from a village to the field … it is furnished with shooting holes … in the center of the lodge there is left a hole so one can run a pole through it up and down onto this pole … the great eagle owl is tied at top … raised or lowered that he starts to flap his wings, as soon as the crows magpies or ravens see this they frequently gather … as then they can be shot from the lodge with great pleasure and a whole district can although not completely freed from these birds of prey so detrimental to the winged game yet quite reduced. ”
“ … ‘The Ways to trap the Wild Animals’ belong to the chief works among Ridinger’s representations of the hunt … here, too, extensive captions are added to the plates which elucidate the depiction … This – typical for Ridinger –
combination of high-quality work of art and … text
should be a reason for the great success of his works ”
(Stefan Morét, Ridinger catalog Darmstadt, 1999, pp. 106 f., erroneously stating 31 sheet as belonging to).
On laid paper with large fleur-de-lis watermark. – Small rust spot in the upper left corner. On the left two tiny tears in the white paper margin of 1.5 cm around backed acid-freely. – Exceedingly lively subject.
Offer no. 16,161 / EUR 590. / export price EUR 561. (c. US$ 621.) + shipping
“ I am curious as to the history of this (original Ridinger printing) plate (I just bought) and the others you have offered. Did you purchase them from the Ridinger estate (indirectly, indeed) or a private collector? These are truly rare one of a kind pieces ”
(Mr. L. A. F., October 28, 2003)