Mezzotint title to a print series recording a Carnival entertainment performed at Salzburg University in 1764 (298 × 420 mm, sheet) View larger
Mezzotint title to a print series recording a Carnival entertainment performed at Salzburg University in 1764 (298 × 420 mm, sheet)
A Commedia dell’arte performance by students of Salzburg University, 1764
Reichssiegel (Florian), 1735-1793

Der Schwätzer und der Leichtgläubige eine Pantomime [Latin text in a parallel column, beginning] Susurro cum nimis Credulo ludus pantomimicus

Augsburg & Vienna, Kaiserlich-Privilegierte Franziskische Reichsakademie Freier Künste und Wissenschaften, 1764 (27 Horning [February])
A suite of twelve prints illustrating scenes in the pantomime “Der Schwätzer der Leichtgläubige”, a carnival entertainment performed in the small auditorium (Aula minor) of Salzburg University, on 27 February 1764. The pantomime was enacted during an intermission of the tragedy “Pietas in patriam” and is dedicated by its author, Florian Reichssiegel, to Prince-Archbishop Siegmund Christoph von Schrattenbach. The principal characters are the clowns Harlequin, Hanswurst, and Pierrot; a synopsis of the action (in Latin and German) appears beneath each print. The scenes were drawn by the Salzburg stage designer Matthias Siller (1710-1790) for the Augsburg printmakers Philip Andreas Degmair (1711-1783) and Johann Philip Haid (1730-1806). The title and prints 2, 8, [10] are mezzotints; prints 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 11, 12 are line engravings. Joined to our suite are duplicate impressions of plates 4 and 5 (both with contemporary hand-colouring).
Subjects
Festival books and prints - Austria - Salzburg, 1764
Prints - Artists, German - Degmair (Philipp Andreas), 1711-1771
Prints - Artists, German - Haid (Johann Philipp), 1730-1806
Theatre - Commedia dell'Arte - Early works to 1800
Theatre - Stage-setting and scenery - Designers, German - Siller (Matthias), 1710-1787
Authors/Creators
Reichssiegel, Florian, 1735-1793
Artists/Illustrators
Degmair, Philipp Andreas, 1711-1771
Haid, Johann Philipp, 1730-1806
Siller, Matthias, 1710-1787
Owners
Gourary, Paul, 1919-2007
Other names
Kaiserlich-Privilegierte Franziskische Reichsakademie Freier Künste und Wissenschaften (Augsburg)
Schrattenbach, Siegmund Christoph von, Archbishop of Salzburg, 1698-1771

Reichssiegel, Florian
Salzburg 1735 – 1793 Dornbach (near Vienna)

Der Schwätzer und der Leichtgläubige eine Pantomime [Latin text in a parallel column, beginning] Susurro cum nimis Credulo ludus pantomimicus.

Augsburg & Vienna, Kaiserlich Franziskische Akademie, ‘27 Horning [February] 1764’

Suite of twelve prints (290/298 × 400/420 mm), irregularly numbered, the title (print 1) and prints 2, 8, [10] are mezzotints lettered below Mathias Siller pinxit Salisburgi | Iohann Philipp Haid Sculpsit and Negotium Academiae Caes. Francisceae excudit Aug. Vind. | Cum Gratia et Privilegio Sac. Caes. Majestatis, with the latter three prints numbered upper right respectively Tabul 2, Tab.3, Tab.9 [i.e 10]; prints 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 11, 12 are line engravings lettered below Mathias Siller pinxit Salisburgi | Philipp Andreas Degmair Sculpsit | Negotium Academiae excudit Viennae et Aug. Vind. | Cum Gratia et Privilegio Sac. Caes. Majestatis and above Collection des Prospects Theatrales pour servir aux Cameres Obscures et autres Machines Optiques | n.iii and numbered respectively (at upper right and bottom right) Tab.3 | 5[3]; Tab.4 | 54; Tab.5 | 55; Tab.6 | 56; Tab. 7 | 57; Tab.9 | 59; Tab.10 [i.e 11] | 60; Tab.12 | 62. Plate 12 with contemporary hand-colouring.

Duplicate impressions of prints 4 and 5 accompany the suite (both with contemporary hand-colouring).

provenance Reiss & Sohn, Auktion 91/2, 23 October 2003, lot 3785 (prints 1–11); Christie’s, ‘Splen­did Ceremonies: The Paul and Marianne Gourary Collection of Illustrated Fête Books’, New York, 12 June 2009, lot 534 (print 12; duplicates of prints 4 and 5)

Thread margins, or trimmed on the plate mark, a few minor defects, but in general very well-preserved.

In museum mounts and preserved in a box.

These very rare prints illustrate scenes in the pantomime ‘Der Schwätzer der Leichtgläubige’, an entertainment performed in the small auditorium (Aula minor) of Salzburg University, on 27 February 1764. The pantomime was enacted during an intermission of the tragedy ‘Pietas in patriam’ and is dedicated by its author, Florian Reichssiegel, to Prince-Archbishop Siegmund Christoph von Schrattenbach. The principal characters are the clowns Harlequin, Hanswurst, and Pierrot; a synopsis of the action (in Latin and German) appears beneath each print.

Fig.1 Mezzotint title to a print series recording a Carnival entertainment performed at Salzburg University in 1764. Reduced from 298 × 420 mm (sheet)
Fig.2 Hanswurst, Harlequin, Pierrot supplicating the Doctor (print 2). Reduced from 295 × 418 mm (sheet)

The scenes were drawn by the Salzburg stage designer Matthias Siller (1710–1790) for the Augsburg printmakers Philip Andreas Degmair (1711–1783) and Johann Philip Haid (1730–1806), the latter producing mezzotints. Most prints bear the legend ‘Prospects thea­trales pour servir aux camères obscures et autres machines optiques’, for which reason Artur Kutcher believed they do not record actual scenery, but ‘Lichtbilddekorationen’, images projected with the help of a camera obscura onto a curtain. His supposition is not endorsed by other authorities.1

Florian Reichssiegel (1735–1793) entered the Benedictine abbey of St. Peter in Salzburg in 1754, became secretary to Abbot Beda in 1759, and in 1766 was appointed professor of poetry of its university and later ‘comicus’.2 Reichssiegel also wrote the pantomime ‘Der Traum’ (carnival 1767–1768) and the ‘interludium’ ‘Die Hochzeit auf der Alm’, both set to music by Johann Michael Haydn,3 as well as ‘Finalkömodien’, plays written to celebrate the close of the school year at Salzburg University.

Fig.3 Print 12. Reduced from 300 × 406 mm (sheet)

Fig.4 Print 4, duplicate impression with hand-colouring

Fig.5 Print 5, duplicate impression with hand-colouring

The majority of our impressions are in fine uncoloured state (only plate 12 and duplicates of plates 4–5 are hand-col­oured). Boberski reproduces a coloured set of the prints in the Salzburger Museum Carolino Augusteum, Graphiksammlung (Inventar-Nummern 1819/49, 1820/49, 5490/49–5499/49) and cites a single uncoloured impression (2047/49).4 A complete set of coloured impressions in the Civica Raccolta delle Stampe Achille Bertarelli in Milan (Albo G 63),5 and another is in the Theatermuseum in Munich.6 An incomplete set of coloured impressions (lacking print no. 3) is in the Getty Research Institute;7 other incomplete sets are in the Sammlung Niessen of the Theatermuseum auf Schloß Wahn in Cologne,8 and Österreichische Nationalbibliothek.9

references Artur Kutscher, Das Salzburger Barocktheater (Vienna 1924), p.72, Tafel xxii–xxviii (title, plates 2–3, 5, 8–9, 12); Marianne Viefhaus-Mildenberger, Film und Projektion auf der Bühne, Die Schaubühne, 57 (Emsdetten 1961), pp.8–10; Heiner Boberski, Das Theater der Benediktiner an der alten Universität Salzburg (1617–1778), Theatergeschichte Österreichs, Band vi: Salzburg, Heft 1 (Vienna 1978), pp.84–85, 301–302, 337, 351–353, Tafel i, iv–ix, Abb.1, 8–17 (reproducing all twelve prints); Hanswurst und Zauberspiel. Das barocke Universitätstheater in Salzburg, catalogue of an exhibition in the Salzburg Museum Carolino Augusteum (Salzburg 2004), p.12 (a coloured impression of plate 12 reproduced, SMCA 5499/49, shown without the verses engraved beneath the scene)


1. Werner Rainer, ‘Die Salzburger Szenare der studentischen Pantomimen und Ballette zur Mozartzeit’ in Homo ludens – Der spielende Mensch. Internationale Beiträge des Institutes für Spielforschung und Spielpädagogik der Universität Mozarteum Salzburg 10 (2000), pp.187–246 (especially pp.206–207, 212–215, with reproductions of plates 1, 5, 9, 12).

2. Petrus Eder osb, ‘Pater Florian Reichssiegel und die Musik’ in Mitteilungen der Gesellschaft für Salzburger Landeskunde 143 (2003), pp.137–144.

3. Werner Rainer, ‘Es könnte einem nicht närrischer träumen. Bemerkungen zu Michael Haydns Traum-Pantomime von 1767’ in Maske und Kothurn 38 (1997), pp.155–231.

4. These coloured impressions featured in Johann Michael Haydn und Salzburg, 1763–1806: ein Vademecum durch die Johann-Michael-Haydn-Gedenkstätte, catalogue of an exhibition in the Erzabtei St. Peter, edited by Ernst Hintermaier (Salzburg: Konsistorialarchiv Salzburg, 1995), pp.63–64 no. 77.

5. The set is described and reproduced by Alberto Milano, ‘Il Chiacchierone e il Credulone, dodici vedute ottiche stampate ad Augsburg’ in Rassegna di studi e di notizie 26 (2002), pp.97–127.

6. Helmut G. Asper, Hanswurst: Studien zum Lustigmacher auf der Berufsschauspielerbühne in Deutschland im 17. und 18. Jahrhundert (Emsdetten 1980), pp.255–256, 400, 407 and Abb. 123–134.

7. Los Angeles, Getty Research Institute, Accession Number P980004, Box 16, folders 9–14; Box 17, folders 1–3. Included in this group are the four prints offered for sale by Sotheby’s, ‘Books, prints and drawings from the Cavanagh Theatre collection’, London, 20 July 1993, lot 408.

8. Lacking prints nos. 1–2; see Asper, op. cit., p.400; Milano, op. cit., p.128 note 3.

9. Print 2 (ÖNB Sz B 192 Th) was exhibited in Mozart, Werk und Zeit. Ausstellung im Prunksaal der Österreichischen Nationalbibliothek, 30 May–30 September 1956, catalogue by Franz Hadamowsky und Leopold Nowak (Vienna 1956), p.26 no. 8.

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