Hippological Splendor of the Orient
Ridinger, Johann Elias (Ulm 1698 – Augsburg 1767). Turkish Horse Finery. Set of 4 sheet of most richly bridled most noble horses together with their groom in painterly palace exteriors in etching by Martin Elias Ridinger (1731 Augsburg 1780). (1752.) Inscribed: I(-IV). / J. El. Ridinger pix. et del. / aqz / Martin Elias Ridinger filio meo æris incis. as well as following captions in German-French. 10¾-11 × 13⅝-13¾ in (27.3-28 × 34.6-35 cm).
Thienemann & Schwarz 594-597. – The by itself complete set, but without — albeit enclosed in transcription — its title-like text sheet with Ridinger’s honoring of the helpful communications by Baron von Gudenus from Constantinople together with reproduction of his letter to a friend from 1741 with the explanation of present four sceneries intended by Ridinger as introduction or addition to the 32-sheet set of Horses of the Nations (Th. 562-593). 1752 of this already 16 sheet were present, the publication of the further dragged on until about 1760. Of the then totally 36 sheet only four transferred into copper by Johann Elias himself, 22 by Martin Elias, as here, too, and 9 by the stepson Seuter.
Turkish Imperial Personal Horse. / Cheval de main de Grand Seigneur.
“ One such horse ornate with finery … The head with tuft of about four ostrich plumes, an honor which only the personal horses of the sultan are allowed to have about themselves … It is lead by a janissary … into the second court of the seraglio ” (Th.).
“ Suchlike thirty pieces, each held by two grooms, were put up side by side for parade in the second court of the seraglio when in the year 1740. the Roman Imperial Grand Ambassador His Excellency Count Ulfeld, after concluded Treaty of Belgrade, was introduced at the solemn arrival audience with the Turkish Emperor .”
Remarkable as a with Ridinger not uncommon, here, however, not obvious symbol of vanity lying on the ground the massive capital of the outside right pillar of the totally four ones of the foreground, the capitals of which remain outside of the picture anyway.
About the thematically obvious stone vase with the cripple sheet Th. 356 is said in this regard in Wolfgang Weitz, Aus der Jagdgeschichte des Vogelsberges, 2006, pp. 18 ff.
“ Also it has no foot on which it can stand. Shall by it be referred to the fragility of all worldly things? There is reason for such a question since the Ridingers have created a plenty of pictures on the Christian faith. ”
And in just this sense then the broken off capital should be read as message in the face of the wealth of the horses and their ambience. And by appearing on the first sheet it applies to the set as a whole.
Divani from the right side. / Divani du coté droit.
“ That’s how the horse is called which the Grand Vizier and other viziers use to ride in their official dress. Silver chains as thick as one’s thumb run from the halter down to the saddle and cause a particular jingling … ”
Divani from the left side. / Divani du coté gauche.
“ This is an entirely different horse and decorated quite differently than the one before … ”
In the corrected state. The withdrawn earlier one had represented the animal erroneously from the right side once more, “for one forgot to redraw it before the engraving” (Th.).
For the preparatory drawing in pen & brown ink see Ridinger appendix 317 of the 1869 catalog of the collection of drawings left by J. A. G. Weigel. This supposedly identical with the one figuring in German art trade in the 1970s. An “excellent” study in likewise pen & brown ink, 8⅝ × 10¼ in (220 × 262 mm), then with Georg Hamminger (lot 1895 of his catalog of 1895).
Personal Horse of a Pasha. / Cheval de main d’un Pacha.
“ Likewise shown from the left side … It is distinguished from the others by long cover, richly decorated with gems, silver galloons and the like (however, such one already on sheet I), and by panther skins above … ”
The completely executed preparatory drawing on blue paper in the 1970s in German, then Swiss art trade.
The splendid set
in quite uniformly shining print quality and fine wide margins
of 2-2.7 cm above & below and 4-4.7 (II-IV) laterally and, sheet I, only 2.5 cm on the right, but 6 cm on the left resp. – With typographic watermarks, supposedly main and secondary mark resp. of the Wangen papermill favored by Ridinger. – Sheet III with c. 3.5-5 cm large brown impression of a plant’s leaf in the white lower margin touching still three letters of the caption as well as browning in the white area between its bilangualism perceptible practically only against the light. Otherwise of impeccable freshness as in such entire condition most rare .
Offer no. 15,765 / price on application
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I know this is a great thing to ask of you, I am hoping that in our mutual respect of equestrian heritage you will oblige … ”
(Mrs. B. F., October 24, 2007)