Balzac (drawn by).
Paris. Panckouke. Ca. 1820.
Copper plate engraving (uncolored), image approx. 14 x 26 inches on sheet approximately 21 x 28 inches. Very good condition: light scattered foxing (mainly outside image area), crease and short tear in upper left corner (image not affected). Publisher's blindstamp at top right. This very large, finely engraved image is plate 48 from Volume I of the Antiquities section of the monumental publication "Description de L'Egypte," which documented the research of the "savants" who accompanied Napoleon Bonaparte's ambitious expedition to Egypt (1798-1801). The full title, translated into English reads "Description of Egypt, or the collection of observations and research made in Egypt during the Expedition of the French Army" hinting at the varied purposes of this foray into the Middle East. The European demand for information about Egypt and its glorious monuments led to the publication of two editions of the work, with engravings pulled from the same printing plates; this is from the second edition, uncolored as issued. Shown is a general view of the Temple of Horus at Edfu, located on the west bank of the Nile River between Esna and Aswan; the quality of the engraving powerfully evokes the splendor of this beautiful edifice and surrounding landscape. Item #40935