Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Speculum Romanae Magnificentiae: Council of Trent

Speculum Romanae Magnificentiae
Anonymous, Italian, 16th century
Claudio Duchetti (Italian, active Venice and Rome, ca. 1565–died ca. 1585)
Etching and engraving
sheet: 13 3/16 x 19 9/16 in. (33.5 x 49.7 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, Transferred from the Library, 1941
Accession Number:
Not on view
This print comes from the museum’s copy of the Speculum Romanae Magnificentiae (The Mirror of Roman Magnificence) The Speculum found its origin in the publishing endeavors of Antonio Salamanca and Antonio Lafreri. During their Roman publishing careers, the two foreign publishers - who worked together between 1553 and 1563 - initiated the production of prints recording art works, architecture and city views related to Antique and Modern Rome. The prints could be bought individually by tourists and collectors, but were also purchased in larger groups which were often bound together in an album. In 1573, Lafreri commissioned a title page for this purpose, which is where the title ‘Speculum Romanae Magnificentiae’ first appears. Lafreri envisioned an ideal arrangement of the prints in 7 different categories, but during his lifetime, never appears to have offered one standard, bound set of prints. Instead, clients composed their own selection from the corpus to be bound, or collected a group of prints over time. When Lafreri died, two-third of the existing copper plates went to the Duchetti family (Claudio and Stefano), while another third was distributed among several publishers. The Duchetti appear to have standardized production, offering a more or less uniform version of the Speculum to their clients. The popularity of the prints also inspired other publishers in Rome to make copies however, and to add new prints to the corpus.

The museum’s copy of the Speculum entered the collection as a group of 3 albums with inlaid engravings and etchings. The prints have since been removed, but the original place of each print within the album is contained in the accession number: 41.72(

Originally volume 3, plate 70 in the scrapbook.
Inscription: At top center: Congregatio patrum generale sacri et oecumenici tridentini / concilii authoritate sanctißimi Christi Vicarij Pij iiii, vere pij et inimor: / tali gloria dignißimi Pontificis Maximi, fieri solitam cede Divae Mariae / mairoris tidentati ad quam omnes ire poterat audituri theologos lo: / /questo Nam quando loquitur Episeopo jnemo ingreditur Cardinales / legati sedis Apostolicae v et Cardinales no[n] legati ii Loteringus et Ma: / drucius oratores Regum Principim Christainorum et Rerum pu: / blicarum XVI Patriarchae Archiepiscopi Episcopi Abbates Genera: / les ordinum CCL doctores theologi et uirisperiti
At lower right: La gernerale co[n]gregatione d'i patdri del sacro (to as superscript_) C[n]cilio di Treto p l'auto/ rita del Sa[n] (mo as superscript) Vicario di XPO N S PIO iiii veranicte pio e d'immortal gloria / (mo as superscript) Pontefice Maßimo La quale si suol fare nella chiesa di S.ta (ta as superscript) maria Maggior / do i Vesconi parlano vicino entra il n (degree symbol) della qual co[n]gregatione e questo dioe / Cardinali legati della sede apostolica v et no[n] legati ii il Lorena, et il Madrii / cia tutti gli oratori della Re de altri Principi christiani, et delle Repu: / bliche facciano il n (degree symbol) di XVI li Patriarchi Arciveseovi Vescovi Abbati et / Generali degli ordini erano intutto 230(?) tutti dottori di theologia o delle leggi
At lower right: Claudij ducheti formis
At lower right on base of column: VEN ANNO MDLXIIIII

Marking: On verso at lower left: The Metropolitan Museum of Art stamp
H. P. Kraus
Quaritch Catalogue 351 Huelsen 131a
Peter Parshall "Antonio' Lafreri's 'Speculum Romanae Magnificentiae'" Print Quarterly. 1, London, 2006.

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