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St. Anthony of Egypt

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Netherlands (probably, made)

  • Date:

    after ca. 1521 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Engraving in ink on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level H, case 93, shelf E, box 111

Like his contemporary, Albrecht Dürer, Lucas van Leyden was internationally recognised within his lifetime and beyond. Giorgio Vasari, writing in 1568, praised Leyden's fine engraving style and his use of perspective. Fine quality early impressions of his prints are rare. Copper printing plates are capable of producing only one or two hundred fine impressions before the plate starts to wear down, especially with a fine line engraving style as Leyden's. Such was Leyden's reputation and his prints so sought by collectors that his original printing plates were kept and impressions taken from them long after his death, resulting in a larger number of surviving poor and worn impressions than fine ones. Numerous copies were also made from his originals, which satisfied demand when originals were not available or affordable and for collectors of images interested more in subject matter.

Physical description

This engraving represents St. Anthony of Egypt, sometimes called The Hermit. He stands in a pigsty reading a book, which he holds in his left hand, and in his other hand is a walking stick. A pig is to his right, and has a collar with bell around its neck. Anthony has a bright halo behind his head. He wears a hooded cloak over a knee-length tunic, and has soft cloth boots. There is also a bell in the stall hanging from a post.

Place of Origin

Netherlands (probably, made)


after ca. 1521 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Engraving in ink on paper

Marks and inscriptions

Artist initial inscribed on plate, left centre


Height: 11.4 cm max, cropped image, Width: 7.7 cm max, cropped image, Height: 52 cm mounted in volume, page size, Width: 33 cm mounted in volume, page size

Descriptive line

Engraving, St. Anthony of Egypt, copy after Lucas Hugensz van Leyden (called Lucas Jacobsz).

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Bartsch, Adam von. Le Peintre Graveur. Leipzig, J.A. Barth, 1854-1876.
The New Hollstein: Dutch & Flemish etchings, engravings and woodcuts, 1450-1700. Roosendaal. Koninklijke Van Poll in cooperation with the Rijksprentenkabinet, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 1993-
Cornelis, Bart and Jan Piet Filedt Kok. The taste for Lucas van Leyden prints. In: Simiolus - Netherlands Quarterly for the History of Art. 26: 1/2 (1998).

Production Note

dating of original from new Hollstein


Printing ink



Subjects depicted

Stick; Tunic; Pigs; Pigsty; Book; Cloak; Bells (idiophones); Post; Boots


Christianity; Prints; Images Online

Production Type



Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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