The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Friday, December 3, 2021

Incredibly rare maps of the defeat of the Spanish Armada at risk of export
Valued at £600,000 the works are the only surviving contemporary drawings of the battle.

LONDON.- Culture Minister Caroline Dinenage has placed an export bar on a set of ten hand drawn maps of the defeat of the Spanish Armada valued at £600,000 plus VAT.

It is hoped that a UK gallery or institution will come forward to acquire the treasures for the nation which depict the greatest naval battle of the early modern period. The drawings were completed by an unknown draughtsman, possibly from the Netherlands and are undated, although are thought to be from the years immediately after the battle.

The defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 has a totemic place in English history and has been employed at various moments of national crisis including the threats of invasion from Napoleonic France and Nazi Germany.

The most famous images of the battle extant are a series of engravings completed in 1590 by Augustine Ryther. The original drawings have been lost and the maps at risk of export are a very rare survivor of this iconic moment of history.

Although the works are highly unlikely to be the preliminary drawings for the Ryther engravings, it is also unlikely that they were copied from the engravings. There is a possibility that the works are copies of the drawings by Robert Adams that were used by Ryther. The works appear to have been abandoned mid-way through completion following the publication of the Ryther engravings as a number included Dutch text of a type accompanying the engravings while others did not.

The committee noted that the drawings offered a rare, contemporary insight into the artistic material culture, often associated with Queen Elizabeth I, that followed the battle.

Culture Minister Caroline Dinenage said: The defeat of the Spanish Armada is central to the historical tale of what makes Britain great. It’s the story of plucky England defeating a greater foe and helped to create the world we live in today. These incredibly rare drawings are a very important part of the story of our nation and I hope, even in these challenging times, that a buyer can be found so they can be enjoyed by members of the public for generations.

The Minister’s decision follows the advice of the Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest (RCEWA). The committee noted that the works offered a rich resource for the study of the development of the marine painting genre and the outstanding research potential offered by the drawings due to their rarity.

The RCEWA made its recommendation on the grounds of the drawing’s outstanding significance for the study of the Armada story on British history and identity and how it affected marine depictions.

Committee member Peter Barber said: Robert Adams, Surveyor of the Queen’s Works, and military engineer, was one of the most skilled cartographic draughtsmen of Elizabethan England, the delicacy of his work resembling the finesse of miniaturists such as Hilliard. His maps of the Armada, engraved in significantly amended form by Augustine Ryther, became the official image of one of the most celebrated episodes in English history. Their importance in the creation of England’s historic self- image cannot be exaggerated. They provided the models for tapestries which served as a backdrop for the proceedings of the House of Lords and for nearly 250 years.

These drawings are as close as one is ever likely to get, in the absence of the originals, to the appearance of Adams’s manuscript maps but there is much fresh information that can be gleaned from them. That they were probably copied, surreptitiously, by a Dutch artist for illicit publication in the Netherlands demonstrates the importance of the defeat of the Armada not only for England but for Europe as a whole. The drawings need to be saved for the nation so that the full story behind the creation of these iconic images can be properly researched.

The decision on the export licence application for the drawings will be deferred until 9 October 2020. This may be extended until 9 January 2021 if a serious intention to raise funds to purchase it is made at the recommended price of £600,000 plus VAT.

Today's News

July 11, 2020

U.S. Supreme Court to rule on medieval treasure bought by Nazis

A Swiss Dada pioneer finally gets her spotlight

Auctions are crimped as the pandemic forces them online

The National Gallery acquires painting by Camille Pissarro

Incredibly rare maps of the defeat of the Spanish Armada at risk of export

David Zwirner to represent the Estate of Juan Muñoz

Sapar Contemporary exhibits works by Indonesian contemporary puppetry masters

Turkey turns Hagia Sophia back into a mosque

Sotheby's Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels sale totals US$56,473,108

Russia fines LGBT activist for 'gay propaganda' drawings

Christie's online sale fetches $421 mn despite virus pandemic

Exhibition of contemporary Aboriginal Australian memorial poles opens (virtually) at Frost Art FIU

McMullen from Home brings Boston College's museum to viewers

Spitfire tribute as UK says goodbye to WWII icon Vera Lynn

'Batman: The Killing Joke,' Jack Kirby original art help push Heritage Auctions event past $5 million mark

Almine Rech opens an exhibition of new paintings by the New York-based painter Joe Andoe

Leslie K. Johnson named Executive Vice President of Skirball Cultural Center

Todd Smith named Executive Director of Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

Bruneau & Co. announces highlights included in its online-only Antiques & Fine Art auction

The Dance on Camera Festival, when dance is only on camera

Digital theater isn't theater. It's a way to mourn its absence.

Two museums turn a seaside haven into a car lover's dream

Daughter's wedding car worthy of New York's Museum of Modern Art for sale with H&H Classics

Manifesta 13 Marseille introduces Le Tiers Programme

At What Point Do Online Games and Video Games Become Art?

Unique Things to do on the East Coast

Popular smartphone cases Flip cases and wallet cases

Face masks

How To Win In Online Casino Malaysia

How to Appeal an Amazon Suspension

Why use a VPN?

Liposuction Surgery

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful