After Claude Lorrain
In 1636, Claude Lorrain initiated a catalogue raisonné of sorts, drawing copies of his paintings in a bound volume that later became known as the Liber Veritatis. The album passed through several hands after Claude’s death, eventually finding its way to the collection of the Duke of Devonshire, who in 1774 allowed the book of drawings to be borrowed by the well-known publisher John Boydell so that each could be engraved. The artist selected for the task was Richard Earlom, who elected to mimic the original pen and brown wash medium with etching and a selectively rocked mezzotint printed in a sepia-toned ink.Although the inscription here indicates a January 1, 1776, publication date, this more likely indicates the date on which the plate was finished. Earlom engraved the entire 200 sheets of the Liber Veritatis over four years, from 1774 through 1777. Only then did Boydell publish them, as a complete set in two volumes.