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At the Museum of London

Peter Campbell: Artists’ studios

7 June 2001
... directed them to Hampstead and Chelsea; in living memory square feet at knock-down prices tempted them to Hoxton (Creative Quarters identifies the studio furthest east before our own time as that of HansHolbein, who was in Cornhill in 1532). Skint artists, rather surprisingly, usually improve property values, and thus price themselves out of the very districts they have made fashionable. ‘Studio ...
17 December 1992
Tyndale’s New Testament 
edited by David Daniell.
Yale, 429 pp., £18.95, September 1989, 0 300 04419 4
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Tyndale’s Old Testament, being the Pentateuch of 1530, Joshua to II Chronicles of 1537 and Jonah 
edited by David Daniell.
Yale, 643 pp., £25, October 1992, 0 300 05211 1
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... The woodcut below by HansHolbein the Younger, made some time before 1526, shows clearly and succinctly what the Reformation – as far as its religious aspects can be disentangled from its political – was all about. Christ is ...

This Strange Speech

Christopher S. Wood: Early Dürer

18 July 2013
The Early Dürer 
edited by Daniel Hess and Thomas Eser, translated by Lance Anderson et al.
Thames and Hudson, 604 pp., £40, August 2012, 978 0 500 97037 9
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... access to the artist’s style, a demand that could only be satisfied by drawings. Dürer and his epigones, as well as a few peers and near peers such as Lucas Cranach the Elder, Albrecht Altdorfer, Hans Baldung, Hans Burgkmair and HansHolbein the Younger, made prints as well as paintings, and cultivated in their collectible drawings precisely those features of linear style which could not be ...

How to Twist a Knife

Colin Burrow: Wolf Hall

30 April 2009
Wolf Hall 
by Hilary Mantel.
Fourth Estate, 653 pp., April 2009, 978 0 00 723018 1
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... She gives us a wonderfully convivial and knowing Wolsey, but Thomas More she really can’t stick. His household is of course one of the greatest tableaux vivants of the period. The group portrait by HansHolbein (of which only a sketch and a copy survive) sets More among a roomful of women readers, a setting which might have charmed Mantel. But when she brings that picture to life she suggests that ...

Picture in Little

Charles Nicholl: Hilliard’s Trajectory

9 December 2019
Nicholas Hilliard: Life of an Artist 
by Elizabeth Goldring.
Yale, 337 pp., £40, February, 978 0 300 24142 6
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... His subsidiary skills as a jeweller and engraver belong within the ambit of goldsmithery, but there is no indication of who, if anyone, trained him in portraiture. His acknowledged master was HansHolbein the Younger, whom he called ‘the most excellent painter and limner … after the life that ever was’, though they never met (Holbein died in 1543). Hilliard’s success as a limner seems almost ...
4 November 1993
Erasmus: His Life, Work and Influence 
by Cornelis Augustijn, translated by J.C. Grayson.
Toronto, 239 pp., £16.25, February 1991, 0 8020 5864 7
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Erasmus: A Critical Biography 
by Léon-E. Halkin, translated by John Tonkin.
Blackwell, 360 pp., £45, December 1992, 0 631 16929 6
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Erasmus, Man of Letters: The Construction of Charisma in Print 
by Lisa Jardine.
Princeton, 278 pp., £19.95, June 1993, 0 691 05700 1
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... you will find in my books.’ The same point is picked up in the inscriptions on Massys’s portrait medal and Dürer’s engraving; it is made in the painted portraits by Massys and Holbein, all of which show him in a bookish context. On some areas of his life, however, Erasmus was secretive. About his birth, for example, as the son of a priest: his quincentenary was legitimately and ...

A Man It Would Be Unwise to Cross

Stephen Alford: Thomas Cromwell

8 November 2018
Thomas Cromwell: A Life 
by Diarmaid MacCulloch.
Allen Lane, 752 pp., £30, September 2018, 978 1 84614 429 5
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... of Carlisle and Berwick was somehow pulled to pieces by Cromwell personally. Reginald Pole called him a Machiavel, and the label, seemingly congruent with the Frick Collection’s famous portrait by HansHolbein the Younger, has stuck: Cromwell’s intensely focused stillness suggests a man it would be unwise to cross. Even for those who lionised him as a champion of the English Reformation, there ...

How do we know her?

Hilary Mantel: The Secrets of Margaret Pole

2 February 2017
Margaret Pole: The Countess in the Tower 
by Susan Higginbotham.
Amberley, 214 pp., £16.99, August 2016, 978 1 4456 3594 1
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... unknown woman, formerly known as Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury’. It is painted on a dateable oak panel, and the dates suit the presumed subject, but the artist is anonymous. Where is HansHolbein when you need him? The sitter might as well be carved, for all she suggests flesh or circulating blood. Put a different hood on her, and she could be a man – one of her own Plantagenet ...

Eyeballs v. Optics

Julian Bell: Western art

13 December 2001
Secret Knowledge: Rediscovering the Lost Techniques of the Old Masters 
by David Hockney.
Thames and Hudson, 296 pp., £35, October 2001, 0 500 23785 9
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... the same finishing line of Cézanne: 5) The startling verisimilitude of the Flemish masters’ projection-based oil paintings sets new standards for other painters in the Northern tradition such as Holbein, whether these artists actually work with a concave mirror or by relying on the ‘eyeballing’ draughtsmanship of the Florentine tradition. Brought to Italy by Antonello da Messina, the secret ...

A Very Active Captain

Patrick Collinson: Henricentrism

22 June 2006
TheKing’s Reformation: Henry VIII and the Remaking of the English Church 
by G.W. Bernard.
Yale, 736 pp., £29.95, November 2005, 0 300 10908 3
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Writing under Tyranny: English Literature and the Henrician Reformation 
by Greg Walker.
Oxford, 556 pp., £65, October 2005, 0 19 928333 8
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... mention that Henry was on the menu that morning. ‘I know – great big fat bloke.’ Not conspicuously obese but with shoulders two feet too wide, an anatomical impossibility, he looms above me in Hans Eworth’s version of the Holbein full-length portrait every time I dine in my college, Trinity, which Henry founded. (Obesity followed, however. Henry’s waist size went from 37 to 54 inches ...
17 March 1983
An Illustrated History of Interior Decoration 
by Mario Praz, translated by William Weaver.
Thames and Hudson, 396 pp., £35, March 1982, 0 500 23358 6
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Degas 
by Keith Roberts.
Phaidon, 48 pp., £10.50, March 1982, 0 7148 2226 4
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Monet at Argenteuil 
by Paul Tucker.
Yale, 211 pp., £15, April 1982, 0 300 02577 7
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... committed, so these strange pockets of peaceful enterprise continued, as if nothing was going on. Christoffel himself spent a large part of the war preparing a new edition of his standard work on Holbein, which he finally managed to get published by Verlag des Druckhauses Tempelhof in 1950. The colour plates are unimprovably good and the reproduction of the drawings is the equal of the Phaidon ...

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