Italy Presenting the Volume to Charles VI

Print of an allegorical female figure presenting a book to a bust of a man.

Francesco Zucchi (1672–1750) after Giambattista Tiepolo (1696–1770)
Italy Presenting the Volume to Charles VI
From Francesco Mediobarbo Birago, Imperatorum Romanorum Numismata (Milan, 1730), frontispiece
Mount Holyoke College Archives and Special Collections, South Hadley

 

The Imperatorum Romanorum Numismata, dedicated to Emperor Charles VI in Vienna, was the last of the Società Palatina volumes with which Tiepolo was involved. Its subject is the study made by Francesco Mediobarbo, Count of Birago, of two hundred thirty-five ancient Roman coins, dating from the age of Pompey to the age of Emperor Heraclius. The frontispiece features the personification of Italy presenting the book to the emperor, shown in the form of a bust against a background of ancient ruins. Fame, above, plays a trumpet decorated with the Hapsburg's double-headed eagle, while Time is fast asleep in the lower part. The print is signed prominently at the bottom by both Tiepolo and the printer Francesco Zucchi, no doubt because of its imperial dedication.