Pieter Brueghel the Elder, Fortitude from The World of Seven Virtues, c.1560

Signed Pieter Brueghel the Elder engraving, Fortitude from The World of Seven Virtues, c.1560

Artist:Pieter Brueghel the Elder (1525 - 1569)

Title:Fortitude from The World of Seven Virtues, c.1560

Medium:Original Engraving

Image Size:11 1/4 in x 8 5/8 in (28.6 cm x 21.9 cm)

Sheet Size:11 1/4 in x 8 5/8 in (28.6 cm x 21.9 cm)

Framed Size:28 3/4 in x 26 1/8 in (73 cm x 66.4 cm)

Edition:A lifetime impression from the only state of two by Philips Galle based on an original work by Pieter Bruegel

Signature:The signature of Bruegel (Breda, 1525 - Brussels, 1569) is inscribed in the lower right: 'Bruegel Inuentor.'

Condition:This work is in excellent condition - a fine, dark impression

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Gallery Price:
Item # 2096
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Historical Description of this artwork

According to H. Arthur Klein:

The Fortitude Bruegel represents in this print is the virtue whereby men overcome vices.  It is a positive, militant quality.  It is by no means a mere omission of evil acts; neither is it rash or reckless bravado.  It is the  courageous facing and conquest of harmful passions and the sins to which they lead. (130)

Created c. 1560, Fortitude features the following inscription in the lower margin: ANIMVM VINCERE, IRACVNDIAM COHIBERE, CAETERAQ [VE] VITIA ET, AFFECTVS | COHIBERE, VERA FORTITVDO EST (To conquer one’s impulses, to restrain anger and the other vices and emotions: this is the true fortitude). The signature of Bruegel (Breda, 1525 – Brussels, 1569) is inscribed in the lower right: ‘Bruegel Inuentor’ with FORTITVDO (Fortitude) in the lower center.  A lifetime impression from the only state of two by Philips Galle based on an original work by Pieter Bruegel featuring the inscribed text plate along the lower margin on watermarked paper dating the piece to c. 1559 – 1591 (Gothic P with Flower, Br. 8715 – 8723).

Catalogue Raisonné & COA:
It is fully documented and referenced in the below catalogue raisonnés and texts (copies will be enclosed as added documentation with the invoices that will accompany the final sale of the work):

1. Bastelaer, René van. The Prints of Peter Bruegel the Elder, Catalogue Raisonné New Edition, Alan Wofsy Fine Arts: San Francisco, 1992.  Listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné no. 137 on pgs. 184-5.

2. Briquet, C.M. Les Filigranes, Dictionnaire Historique des Marques du Papier, Tome III L-O. Verlag: Leipzig, 1923. Watermark listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné no. 8715 – 8723 on pg. 468.

3. Klein, H. Arthur. Graphic Worlds of Peter Bruegel the Elder, Dover Publications: New York, 1963.  Listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné no. 53 on pgs. 130-1.

4. Orenstein, Nadine M., ed. for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Drawings and Prints, Yale University Press: New Haven, 2001.  Listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné nos. 74-5 on pgs. 188-9 with further footnote reference on pg. 193.

5. Sellink, M. Pieter Bruegel: The Complete Paintings, Drawings and Prints. Ludion: NY, 2007. Listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné no. 92.

6. A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany this work.

About the Framing:
Set in a Spanish style black and gold frame, the ribbon detailing of the moulding compliments the meandering curved shapes within the image.  The black and gold coloration of the work also serves to enhance the contrasting colors within the frame as well.  Completed with white, linen-wrapped mats with a matching gold inner fillet, Fortitude is set behind an archival Plexiglas cover.


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Why Brueghel the Elder?

Popular in his own day, works by this remarkable engraver and painter are full of zest and fine detail with few comparable parallels in European art.

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Artistic Styles of Brueghel the Elder

Old Master, Religious

Pieter Brueghel the Elder Complete Biography

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Pieter Brueghel the Elder Engravings and Paintings
Pieter Brueghel the Elder (1525-1569)

Pieter Brueghel the Elder Biography

Pieter Brueghel (1525-69), usually known as Pieter Brueghel the Elder to distinguish him from his elder son, was the first in a family of Flemish painters. You’ll often find his name spelled as Bruegel (Pieter spelled it like that from 1559 onwards) or Breugel or Breughel.

He was born in Breda in the Duchy of Brabant, which is now part of The Netherlands but back then part of the Flanders.

Note: Flanders or Vlaanderen and the Netherlands (aka known as Holland) or Nederland share the same language. It’s called Flemish, or “Vlaams” in Belgium and Dutch, or “Nederlands” in The Netherlands. And the name Holland, although it’s often taken to mean the whole of the Netherlands, is really part of that country only, the area of the provinces called Zuid Holland and Noord Holland (South and North Holland).

Brueghel was accepted as a master in the Antwerp painters’ guild in 1551, after being an apprentice of Coecke van Aelst, a leading Antwerp artist, sculptor, architect, and designer of tapestry and stained glass. Brueghel traveled to Italy in 1551 or 1552, completing a number of paintings, mostly landscapes, there. Returning home in 1553, he settled in Antwerp but ten years later moved permanently to Brussels. He married van Aelst’s daughter, Mayken, in 1563. His paintings, including his landscapes and scenes of peasant life, stress the absurd and vulgar, yet are full of zest and fine detail. They also expose human weaknesses and follies. He was sometimes called the Peasant Brueghel. But it was in nature that he found his greatest inspiration. His mountain landscapes have few parallels in European art. Popular in his own day, Bruegel prints have remained consistently popular. Pieter Brueghel the Elder died in Brussels on Sept. 9, 1569.

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