Rue des Chantres, Paris


Charles Meryon (1821-1868), Rue des Chantres, Paris, etching, 1862. Before letters. Reference: Delteil 17, Schneiderman 85. Fourth state (of 6). In very good condition, printed on a grey/ivory laid paper, with margins, 11 3/4 x 5 7/8, the sheet 13 1/8 x 7 5/8 inches.

A fine impression of this print, rare in this state before letters and before the edition.

The first four states of Rue des Chantres were printed by Meryon, in very small numbers; then in the fifth state an edition of 100 impressions was printed by Delatre, with the title, address, date in the margin below.

In this fourth state the bells and cartouche with the initials JB are added at the top; a dolphin is added to spire of Notre Dame, and some other small changes were added. In this impression the figure of the tiny dolphin is quite distinct, although Schneiderman notes that this figure is not very distinct. This suggests that this impression is an early one; in the later states this tiny dolphin wears away and is replaced by a weathercock.

This narrow street is filled with people: some soldiers possibly brawling with two policeman in their midst; a woman carrying bread, with a child; a howling dog. As in so many of Meryon’s prints, a spire of Notre Dame rises in the distance.

This is a composite view, based on separate drawings of the street which Meryon later aligned for the etching.