Fête-Day  September 30


Saint  Jerome

with  the  Lion


“ … not  only  the  most  scholarly ,
but  also  the  most  eloquent
among  the  Western  Doctors … ”



of  Sciences + Theological  Faculties ,

Teachers , Students + Pupils ,

but  also  against  Eye-diseases

Johann Jacob Ridinger (1736 Augsburg 1784). Saint Jerome. In full figure as cardinal, preciously dressed, with aureole, sitting to the left at a little table, but the head turned to the right and looking laterally to the ground to hear the message of the angel standing behind his seat. This just came forth from the heavy curtain – standing for the curtain of life, since the middle-ages then also symbol of the mysterious – still held back by the raised left. The right of the saint holds a quill in interruption of writing in the folio resting on his right leg. On the little table beside cardinal hat + inkstand scourge as instrument of torture of Christ’s. Left at his feet the front of the peacefully resting lion. Mezzotint after Alessandro Marchesini (1664 Verona 1738, active in Verona, Venice, Padua). Inscribed: Marchesini pinxit a Venetia. / Ioh. Iac. Ridinger sculps. / Ioh. Elias Ridinger exc. A. V., otherwise in the upper cavity of the mussel-shaped cartouche S. | HIERONYMUS. Subject size 21⅞ × 16¾ in (55.7 × 42.5 cm).

Alessandro Marchesini, St. Jerome


Counts Faber-Castell

their Ridinger sale 1958
with its lot no. 176
on the underlay carton

Radulf Count of Castell-Rüdenhausen


Schwarz 1548 (variant in writing: “Iacob” + “I. El. … excud.”); Faber-Castell 176 (without mentioning of the variant as against Schwarz); Wend, (Additions to the Definitive Catalogues of Prints), I/1 (1975), 229 (variant in writing: “Iac.” as here, otherwise as Schwarz).

Not in Thienemann (1856), Stillfried (1876), Weigel, Art Stock Catalogue, pts. I-XXVIII (1838/57), Coppenrath Collection (1889 f.), Helbing XXXIV (Works by J. E. and M. E. Ridinger; 1900), Rosenthal, Ridinger list 126 (1940).

The  great  elegant , exceedingly  sympathetic  sujet  –

compositional  pendant  to  Saint  Ambrose  as  also  associated  with  Treves

after  Marchesini  likewise ,

– in very fine impression of rich contrast with variant in writing, otherwise with WANGEN watermark as standing for contemporary impressions, below, however, and parallel to the Ambrose sheet, trimmed under loss of 2 cm within the inscription field with mussel-shaped cartouche reserved for entries of individual kind, though usually left empty in the preserved copies and here therefore obviously deemed dispensable for the picture. The otherwise tiny(est) margin running around on three sides partly cracky on two sides, here and there up to the edge of the subject. In the subject itself – numbered in its right upper corner with red chalk pen “80.” – some folds + little pleats, under passepartout at the latest of definitely pleasing general impression, not least with respect to the rarity of these sheets as then already 1839 those by Ridinger after Marchesini remained unknown to Nagler (VIII, 304). Accordingly then Thienemann 1856 generally:

“ The  mezzotints  are  almost  not  available  in  the  trade  anymore

… all worked by and after Joh. El. Ridinger (are) that rare that they are to be found almost only in some public, grand print rooms. I have come across most of the described ones only in the famous print room at Dresden … ”

(pages VIII + 270).

A situation also possible new editions could change little as according to the expert Sandrart (1675) the technically conditioned extremely fast wearing off mezzotint plate only permits 50-60 good impressions.

Here  then  the  copy  Counts  Faber-Castell

with a quite human charming sujet from the core of ecclesiastical history to whose most prominent doctors Jerome (Stridon/Sdrin, Croatia, about 340/42 – Bethlehem 420 [419?]) loaded with a youthful past reckons.

“ … he (is) not only the most scholarly, but also the most eloquent among the Western Doctors … (and) in his biographies of St. Paul, Hilary, Malchus (he has)

right  actually  invented  the  pious  novel ”

(Meyers Konversations-Lexikon, 4th ed., VIII (1888), 524.).

In his early years “he  stayed  for  some  time  at  Treves“ in whose famous schools he continued his studies and got acquainted to monastic life. His episcopal chirotony is reported in the legends of the 15th century as dignity of Cardinal referred to here by the cardinal hat. 386 he took is permanent residence in Bethlehem where he founded a monastery and nunneries.

„ Here H. gave the first example of a monkhood that makes the cultivation of sciences and literature its chief duty. He (translated, having command of seven languages, essential parts of the Bible from Hebrew and Greek into Latin [Vulgata],) wrote quite a number of commentaries on Old and New Testament, valuable publications of archeological content, legends of saints and monks … ”

(Meyers op. cit.).

So he became, in his ranking likely compared with Augustine,  patron  of scientific associations, of teachers, students + pupils, of the theological faculties + Bible societies, but

also  against  eye-diseases ,

furthermore of Dalmatia + Lyon. September 30 as his dying day is considered his memorial day by Christian religions, for the Orthodox it is June 15.

This purpose of life and its standing is reflected by the present sheet just as by the lion belonging inseparably to him, whom he once had removed a thorn from his paw. For the lion-immortalizing Ridingers the lion attribute bound to him was a dainty addition anyway in their work of saints widely quite unjustly carped at.

Offer no. 14,866 / EUR  790. / export price EUR  751. (c. US$ 818.) + shipping

Remarkable  the  Consideration  of

all  of  St.  Jerome’s  Attributes

Johann Elias Ridinger (Ulm 1698 – Augsburg 1767). Saint Jerome. Three-quarter figure as hermit to the right with bare chest at a table with two folios, the left holding a quill resting on the opened right one of which. Right beside the inkstand, left of the table crucifix leaning against large cardinal hat. The hat itself leaning against double bookshelf. On this folios, hour-glass, death’s-head + torture scourge of Christ’s. The saint himself looking towards the back upper left from where a divine trombone conveys the message. The lion looking sternly from below the table. The whole within a frame with floral corner pieces. Below concluding large mussel-shaped cartouche within broad inscription field for entries of individual kind which both have been left empty here as the norm for the preserved copies. Mezzotint. Inscribed: in the mussel-shaped cartouche set into the upper ledge of the frame S. HIERONYMUS. / right below between the frame’s ledge and inscription field Ioh. Elias Ridinger excud. Aug. Vind. 22¾ × 16⅝ in (57.8 × 42.3 cm).

Johann Elias Ridinger, St. Jerome


Counts Faber-Castell

their Ridinger sale 1958
with its lot no. 177
on the underlay carton

Radulf Count of Castell-Rüdenhausen


Compare Schwarz 1549 (20⅛ × 15⅛ in [51.1 × 38.5 cm]; variant in writing: “Elias” abbreviated after “l”, otherwise see below); Faber-Castell 177 (negligently as Schwarz 1549); Wend, (Additions to the Definitive Catalogues of Prints), I/1 (1975), 230 (as Schwarz).

Not in Thienemann (1856), Stillfried (1876), Weigel, Art Stock Catalogue, pts. I-XXVIII (1838/57), Coppenrath Collection (1889 f.), Helbing XXXIV (Works by J. E. and M. E. Ridinger; 1900), Rosenthal, Ridinger list 126 (1940).

Enlarged + reversed  copy  of  Schwarz  1549  not  known  to  literature

on toned laid paper with watermark fleur-de-lis, probably contemporary, but also rather later. Noticeable that the enlarged format orients by other sheets of saints by Ridinger as e.g. the above cardinal Jerome mezzotinted by Johann Jacob after Alessandro Marchesini (Schwarz 1548), though without the latter being “framed” likewise, or that of St. Mark Stillfried 1404, at which a note of Castell’s on the back of the present sheet points because of a similar scenery, by the way also lion  and  death’s-head.

Marvelous deep-brown impression with margins of 1.5-2 cm running around of perfect preservation with partial minimal touch of tiny foxing spots, three little rust spots feebly showing through from the back, and four small to tiny holes backed by old at the upper margin of the subject, reverse lower left remains of mounting, as nothing to reckoned at all. – On the underlay carton besides Castell’s reference to Gutmann (Schwarz) still another inscription by a different hand. The sheet seems to have been acquired in the English trade.

Interesting  present  consideration  of  all  attributes  of  St.  Jerome

as the oversized cardinal hat joins the hermit and the lion the death’s-head. Rather it is hermit  or cardinal + lion  or death’s-head as then also in Ridinger’s representation of the Marchesini painting above as cardinal and just with the lion whom Jerome once had relieved of a thorn in the paw.

Offer no. 14,865 / EUR  485. / export price EUR  461. (c. US$ 502.) + shipping

Domenichino (Bologna 1581 – Naples 1641). St. Hieronymus. At the table with the quill in his hand writing in a book. A letter lying under this hanging over the table’s edge as synonym of vanity. Further hour glass and another book and writing utensils. Steel engraving by Albert Henry Payne (London 1812 – Leipsic 1902). C. 1845. Inscribed: Museum in Berlin / Domenichino pt. / A. H. Payne sc., otherwise as above. 6½ × 4⅜ in (16.4 × 11.1 cm).

Domenichino, St. Jerome

“ … D.s first public order in Rome: (the) outer portico frescos for S. Onofrio with three Scenes from the Life of St. Hieronymus (1604/05) … 1612 … commissioned with an altar piece for the first time: The Last Communion of St. Hieronymus (now Pin. Vaticana) for the Congregazione di S. Girolamo della Carità (displayed on the high altar on Sep. 30., 1614, for the feast of the saint) … With this painting D. succeeded in the final break-through … ”

(Nicosetta Roio, Allgemeines Künstler-Lexikon XXVIII, 2001, 383).

Offer no. 14,257 / EUR  46. (c. US$ 50.) + shipping

„ heute kam ich wieder nach Hause und fand die Bilder vor. Sie sind wohlbehalten angekommen und in einem guten Zustand … Vielen Dank für Ihre Mühe “

(Frau E. K., 24. Juni 2002)