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Print - The Judgement of Paris

The Judgement of Paris

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:


  • Date:


  • Artist/Maker:

    Collaert, Adriaen (designer)
    Collaert, Adriaen (engraver)

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level D, case EO, shelf 120

In this six plate series after Adriaen Collaert, seven figures from the episode of the Judgement of Paris are represented. The three contestants for Paris’ apple, Juno, Minerva and Venus, are each accompanied by an identifying attribute. Minerva is armed and holds a shield with the Gorgon’s head, Juno carries a sceptre and is accompanied by a peacock, and Venus, the winner, holds the apple in one hand while leading Cupid, the god of desire, with the other. Paris holds his shepherd’s staff under a tree, extending the apple towards the victor. Two other figures, Mercury and an older male figure, possibly Neptune as a river god, are not central to the narrative, but by incorporating them, Collaert shows his mastery as a draughtsman by presenting the nude forms in a variety of postures. Especially in the figures of Paris and the river god, it is possible that Collaert was looking to Marcantonio Raimondi’s Judgement of Paris after Raphael, an engraving from the 1510’s. In the Collaert series, each medallion is set in a dark field a decorated with intricate grotesques, sometimes relating to the central figure. Given the close association of grotesques with Roman wall decoration in the 16th and 17th centuries and the Classical theme of the central figures, the series displays a deep interest in emulating antique decorative art.

Physical description

Rectangular print with the figure of Paris in a circular medallion, surrounded by a shaded background and grotesques.

Place of Origin





Collaert, Adriaen (designer)
Collaert, Adriaen (engraver)

Materials and Techniques


Marks and inscriptions

"Adrian Collaert invent. sculp. & excudit"


Height: 9.4 cm, Width: 13.9 cm

Object history note

For the complete series, see E. 2439-1912 through E. 2441-1912 and 28404.1, .2 and .4

Descriptive line

Adriaen Collaert (after), plate from a suite of 6 ornamental plates depicting the judement of Paris. Flemish, late 1590s.

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

Hollstein, F.W.H., Ann Diels, Marjolein Leesberg, Arnout Balis, and Collaert. The new Hollstein Dutch & Flemish etchings, engravings and woodcuts, 1450-1700 The Collaert Dynasty / comp. by Ann Diels and Marjolein Leesberg; ed. by Marjolein Leesberg and Arnout Balis. The New Hollstein Dutch & Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts, 1450-1700. Ouderkerk aan den IJssel: Sound & Vision Publishers, 2005.

Subjects depicted

Rabbits; Lizards; Unicorns; Moths


Ornament prints


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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