Illustrations of The Book of Job.

William BLAKE

Illustrations of The Book of Job. Large folio 19 3/4 x 13 1/2). A complete set of the 1874 edition of 100 pulled from the original plates and published by John Linnell, printed by Holdgate Brothers on India paper mounted on heavy unwatermarked wove paper in 1874. In 1919 the copperplates went to the British Museum Print Room. Each engraving is housed in a 22 x 16-inch archival mat. The matted engravings are housed in 2 solander boxes, each measuring 23 1/2 x 17 1/2 x 3 inches. $35,000 the complete set

Blake's Illustrations of the Book of Job were first commissioned and paid for in 1826 by John Linnell when 215 proof sets and 100 sets "on drawing paper" were issued. According to Linnell's son, the plates were then put away for the best part of fifty years, before 100 fresh prints were struck; "my father considered the plates at the last [1874] were as good as they ever were, for the work being cut by a graver, and not etched, it is durable - and is not worn by the printing as is the case with an etching" (Bentley p.523).