The Doge’s Procession Crossing Saint Mark’s Square, Venice


This view of the procession of the doge in Saint Mark’s Square in Venice is from the collection of cityscapes and broadsheets that once belonged to the Swedish statesman Count Magnus Gabriel De la Gardie (1622−86). ‏The procession of the doge through the square to the Bucentaur, the state galley, was observed annually on Ascension Day up to 1798 to consecrate the symbolic betrothal of the city with the sea. The print is by Jost Amman (circa 1539−91), a noted Swiss engraver and prolific book illustrator. The Magnus Gabriel De la Gardie Collection consists of 187 engravings from the late 1500s and early 1600s. The prints originally were bound, ordered, and assigned a number. The early provenance of the collection is uncertain. After perusing the correspondence of King Gustav II Adolph and the Dutch philologist and diplomat Johannes Rutgersius, the former national librarian of Sweden E.W. Dahlgren conjectured that the pictures were ordered by the king and purchased by Rutgersius. The collection later was incorporated into the library of Magnus Gabriel De la Gardie, then deposited in the Archive of Antiquities at the end of the 17th century, only to be transferred to the Royal Library in 1780. An exhaustive catalog of the collection was published by Isak Collijn in 1915, Magnus Gabriel de la Gardie’s samling af äldre stadsvyer och historiska planscher i Kungl. Biblioteket. Dahlgren provides an account of the early provenance of the collection in his article, “Miscellanea” in Nordisk tidskrift för bok- och biblioteksväsen (1920).

Last updated: February 3, 2015