The Intaglio Printers

Abraham Bosse French

Not on view

In this print, Bosse demonstrates the final steps involved in printing an intaglio plate—in other words, an etching or an engraving. In the background, a man inks the copper plate using a dabber, while in the foreground another assistant wipes the plate with the palm of his hand. In the text below, Bosse writes that the ink is made of burned nut oil and wine dregs, the best quality of which, he notes, comes from Germany. Once inked and wiped, the plate is then placed on the press, covered with a damp sheet of paper and a protective blanket, and run under the roller at great pressure. The effort involved in turning the wheel of the press is apparent.

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