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Print - Portrait of Virgil Solis

Portrait of Virgil Solis

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Nuremberg (made)

  • Date:

    1562 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Jenichen, Balthasar (print-maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case TOPIC, shelf 6C

Balthasar Jenichen made this portrait of artist and printmaker Virgil Solis in the year of Solis's death. Jenichen was a journeyman printer and painter who worked in Solis' workshop and took over the business after his master's death. This image depicts Solis as an engraver. He is holding a burin and a metal plate engraved with a design similar to playing cards that he issued. In front of him on the bench are his tools, including a burin, a sharpening stone and a double-ended etching needle.

Though cut off from this print, an epitaph below found on other examples reads like an advert. It was perhaps used as such since the workshop continued to use Solis' name and his plates. The inscription describes Solis' various activities; engraving, etching and drawing for woodcuts, as well as illuminating and painting.

Physical description

A small engraving, showing a bearded man engraving with engraving tools on a workbench including two burins (one held in his hand), a double-ended etching needle and a sharpening stone. Text originally below has been cut off from this impression.

Place of Origin

Nuremberg (made)


1562 (made)


Jenichen, Balthasar (print-maker)

Materials and Techniques


Marks and inscriptions

'B. I.'
B on the middle left, I (J) on the middle right.

[two monograms for V.S.}
Monograms; V.S on both top right and top left.


Height: 10 cm, Width: 7.6 cm

Descriptive line

A portrait of the 16th century printmaker, Virgil Solis, by Balthasar Jenichen, Nuremberg, 1562 .

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

Bartsch, Adam von, 1757-1821. The illustrated Bartsch. New York : Abaris Books, 1978-
Hollstein, F. W. H. German engravings, etchings, and woodcuts, ca. 1400-1700. Amsterdam : M. Hertzberger, 1954-
Hirth, G. Kulturgeschichtliches Bilderbuch, II, no 1066.
Nagler, G.K. Die Monogrammisten.
Ottley, no. 113
Schestag 1871, 118
Victoria and Albert Museum, Department of Engraving, Illustration and Design and Department of Paintings, Accessions 1926, London: Board of Education, 1927.


Printing ink



Subjects depicted

Hats; Print-making; Engraving tools; Tools


Prints; Portraits; Printmaking techniques


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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