Honore Daumier (1808-1879), L’Ivrogne, lithograph, 1834 [with initials in the plate]. Reference: Daumier Register 189, second state (of 2), with letters verso but before/without text. As published in Charivari.  In generally good condition, trimmed rather closely and irregularly, edges browned, 10 7/8 x 8 3/4, the sheet 12 x 9 1/8 inches.

A good impression of this exceedingly rare print.

This is a Daumier print without an explanatory title, thus perhaps justifying my unabashedly quoting the various theories about the print as related by the Daumier Register: ” The title of this print might be: “The drunkard” or “Consequences of a quarrel”. There are different interpretations of this theme by various authors: Champfleury and Delteil are identifying the subject as a quarrel at the Barrière du Maine (today Place Bienvenue). Jean Laran simply finds the print “strange”, while Passeron finds some hidden political significance in it. He assumes that the missing, explanatory text had been suppressed by the censor. Provost suggests that this print shows the victim of an encounter with the police.

There exist only 3 known copies of the “sur blanc” edition. Only few prints originating from the Charivari with the text “au verso” can be found.”