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The Cook and His Wife

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Nuremberg (engraved)

  • Date:

    ca.1496 (engraved)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Dürer, Albrecht, born 1471 - died 1528 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Engraving on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level D, case EL, shelf 82, box C

Physical description

Engraving by Albrecht Dürer, 'The Cook and His Wife'; ca. 1496, German. Inscribed with artist's monogram. Illustration of the tale of the cook and his wife from Geoffrey de la Tour Landry's 'Der Ritter vom Turn'. A well-fleshed cook, holding the accoutrements of his trade, stands with his wife, who gives a sidelong glance at the viewer. Between them, a magpie whispers into the cook's ears, whose head is turned towards the bird and his expression registering surprise.

Place of Origin

Nuremberg (engraved)


ca.1496 (engraved)


Dürer, Albrecht, born 1471 - died 1528 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Engraving on paper

Marks and inscriptions

Artist's monogram at bottom centre


Height: 10.9 cm plate, Width: 7.8 cm plate, Height: 11.2 cm paper, Width: 8.1 cm paper

Descriptive line

The Cook and his Wife by Albrecht Durer (1471-1528); engraving

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

Strauss, Walter L., ed. The Illustrated Bartsch 10 (Commentary): Sixteenth Century German Artists, Albrecht Dürer. New York: Abaris Books, 1980. 328 p., ill. ISBN 089835000X. pp.187-189.
Heller, Joseph. Das Leben und die Werke Albrecht Dürer. Bamberg: 1827. Vols. 2 & 3 (vol. 1 was not published). 963.
Meder, Joseph. Dürer-Katalog: Ein Handbuch über Albrecht Dürers Stiche, Radierungen, Holzschnitte, deren Zustände, Ausgaben und Wasserzeichen. Vienna, 1932. 85.
Dodgson, C. The Masters of Engraving and Etching: Albrecht Dürer, London and Boston, 1926. 17.
Tietze, Hans and Erika Tietze-Conrat. Kritisches Verzeichnis der Werke Albrecht Dürers. Vol. 1, Augsburg 1928; vol.2, Basel and Leipzig 1937; vol.3, Basel and Leipzig, 1938. 184.
Panofsky, Erwin. The Life and Art of Albrecht Dürer. Volume I, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1955 (4th edn). Volume II, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1945 (2nd edn). 191.


Paper; Printing ink



Subjects depicted

Cooks; Wives; Magpies; Spouses; Married couple




Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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