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This antique book sold at auction for $50 in June, 2016

1st Edition Folio Featuring 20 Photographs from the British Museum

‘Designs for Goldsmiths,¬†Jewellers, Etc.’ by Hans Holbein. Twenty photographs from the original drawings in the British Museum by permission of the trustees under the direction of George William Reid, keeper of the prints and drawings. Only four copies of this volume are held in institutions worldwide. Very large folio (measuring 50cm by 43cm) featuring 20 rare tipped-in photographs of designs by Hans Holbein. The drawings from which this collection of designs for ornament are copied (with exception of four plates) and mounted in a small quarto volume in the year 1752 – they are spoken of in a most enthusiastic manner by Dr. Alfred Woltmann in his second volume of Holbein und Seine Zeit, published at Leipzig in 1866. This particular copy of the book has been stamped by the Art and Science Department. Plates include items such as:

  • Dagger-Sheath
  • Rings
  • Bracelets
  • Pommel
  • Cross Handle for Sword
  • Heraldic Designs
  • Designs for Chains or Bracelets, Lockets, Enamel and more

A few examples of Holbein’s more elaborate works highlighted in this book include drawings of the chimney piece formerly in the possession of Horace Walpole made for one of the palaces of King Henry VIII and the designs for Queen Jane Seymour’s gold cup, as well as a time metre.


London. Published with the sanction of science and art department by the Arundel Society for Promoting the Knowledge of Art, 24 Old Bond Street. Sold by Bell and Daldy, York Street, Covent Gardens.