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Imagines Gentis Austriacae

um 1558/69, Artist: Francesco Terzio , (Entwerfer)



Imagines Gentis Austriacae

The luxury volume of engravings entitled Imagines Gentis Austriacae was published at the behest of Archduke
Ferdinand II in five volumes containing a total of seventy-four full-length
portraits of Habsburgs together with their wives and forebears. The individual
volumes are dedicated to members of the House of Austria, including Emperor
Maximilian II, Archduke Ferdinand II, Archduke Charles II of Inner Austria, King
Philip II of Spain and Maria of Spain, wife of Maximilian II. The work is based
on the historical writings of Jakob Mennel, Stabius and Wolfgang Lazius, and
follows the precepts of the historiography promoted by Maximilian I, which
featured legendary elements. As a historiographical work, the Imagines was important in influencing
the decoration of the Spanish Hall at Ambras Castle, the Armamentarium
and a series of terracotta statuettes of members of the House of
Austria from the seventeenth century. The purpose of the Imagines was as deliberate politico-dynastic propaganda, the
visualization of the extensive Habsburg genealogy and the commemoration of particular
exploits of the individuals portrayed. As Scheicher (1983) points out, the
depictions are stereotypical, since each individual is placed against an
architectural background and surrounded by allegorical attributes.

Location: Schloss Ambras Innsbruck Unterschloss, Kunstkammer

Object data

Object Name

Graphik, Druck, Monumentaldruckwerk, Imagines Gentis Austriacae




um 1558/69


Francesco Terzio , (Entwerfer) (um 1523 Bergamo - 1591 Rom) - GND

Gaspar Oselli, gen. Patavinus , (Kupferstecher) (um 1536 Cittadella - nach 1580) - GND


H. 54,2 cm, B. 38,7 cm

Image rights

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Kunstkammer

Inv. No.

Kunstkammer, 6614

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