An Unknown Collection of Preliminary Drawings and Extra Illustrations Prepared for The Arabian Antiquities of Spain by James Cavanah Murphy in the Gennadius Library, Athens

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Abstract

In the Gennadius Library of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Greece, is a heretofore unknown large-format volume that contains many extra illustrations, original drawings, and proofs of plates for The Arabian Antiquities of Spain by James Cavanah Murphy (1760–1814). Based on research conducted between 1802 and 1809, The Arabian Antiquities of Spain features engravings of major monuments of Hispano-Islamic architecture, including the Alhambra, the Great Mosque at Cordoba, and the Generalife at Granada; the work was published posthumously in 1816. Since the Gennadius volume also includes sketches of Islamic monuments from Malaga, Seville, and Xeres, it appears that Murphy originally intended to publish a complete survey of Hispano-Islamic monuments in southern Spain. In the Gennadius volume, grangerized drawings are placed opposite published engravings for comparative purposes; the drawings include notes written by Murphy to the engravers, and several are hand-tinted, which reveal Murphy’s interest in polychromy. This article presents the newly discovered drawings in the Gennadius volume, which adds to our understanding of the monuments depicted in the published plates of Arabian Antiquities, and serves to position Murphy’s pioneering efforts in the context of architectural scholarship, chromolithography, and the book trade in the early nineteenth century.

An Unknown Collection of Preliminary Drawings and Extra Illustrations Prepared for The Arabian Antiquities of Spain by James Cavanah Murphy in the Gennadius Library, Athens

in Muqarnas Online

Sections

Figures

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     Portrait of James Cavanah Murphy (1760–1814), engraving by William John Newton after an original painting by Martin Archer Shee. (Photo: courtesy of the Royal Institute for British Architects Library, London, 1795)
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     View of the east front of the Mesquita Cordoba, from Henry Swinburne’s Travels through Spain in the Years 1775 and 1776 (London, 1779). (Photo: courtesy of Marsh’s Library, Dublin)
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     Frontispiece from Jóse de Hermonsilla, Antigüedades árabes de España. (Photo: courtesy of Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles [84-B21600])
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     Drawing for unused title plate. Ink and wash without letter press, 32 × 24 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Published title plate in James Cavanah Murphy, The Arabian Antiquities of Spain (1815). (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Plate V, “Interior View of the Mosque at Cordoba,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Plate IV, “A View in the Garden Belonging to the Mosque at Cordova,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Drawing for plate IV, ink over pencil, 31 × 44 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at ­Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate VI, “Elevation of the Gate of the Sanctuary of the Koran,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Drawing for plate VI, pencil and bistre, 35.5 × 27.5 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate VII, “Exterior Angle of the Mosque,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain (Photo: Mui­ris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Drawing for plate VII, ink over pencil with bistre, 27 × 38 cm. (Photo: courtesy Gennadius Library of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens)
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     Plate XI, “General Plan of the Fortress of the Alhambra,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Proof of plate XI, overdrawn in bistre and some red ink, 34 × 43.5 cm. Scaled 500 ft. to 1,000 sq. ft. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XII, “Ground Plan of the Royal Palace of Alhamra,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Drawing for plate XII, pencil and ink over wash, 29.5 × 41 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XV, “Elevation of the Ancient Gate of Judgment,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Drawing for plate XV, pencil and ink, 32 × 27 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XXIII, “The King’s Bath,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XXIV, “The Queen’s Bath,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawings for plate XXIII, ink over pencil, 34.5 × 22 cm; and for plate XXIV, ink over pencil, 25 × 23.5 cm (on same page). (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XXV, “Concert Room of the Baths,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Drawing for plate XXV, ink and bistre wash over pencil, 57 × 32 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XXXI, “View of the South Side of the Pateo del Agua,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Study for staffage on plate XXXI: two figures, pencil, 7.6 cm (top); drawing for plate XXXI, bistre over pencil, 36 × 31 cm (middle); study for staffage on plate XXXI: three figures, pencil, 8.5 × 7 cm (bottom). (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XXXII, “Elevation of an Alcove in the Pateo del Agua,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for plate XXXII, bistre over pencil, 38 × 27 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Colored proof for plate XXXII, “Elevation of an Alcove in the Pateo del Agua.” (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     “Divan Patio del Agua,” from Plans, Elevations, and Sections of the Alhambra (1846) by Owen Jones and Jules Goury. (Photo: courtesy of Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles, 84-B21600)
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     Color photograph of alcove in the Pateo del Agua. (Photo: Muiris Moynihan 2017)
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     Plate XXXIII, “A Perspective View of the Court and Fountain of Lions,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Plate XXXIV, “Elevation of the Fountain of Lions,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. ­(Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Plate XXXVIII, “Hall of the Two Sisters,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: Muiris Moynihan, 2018)
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     Drawing for plate XXXVIII, “Hall of the Two Sisters,” ink, 19 × 15 cm, perspective view. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for plate XXXVIII, ink over pencil, 48 × 29 cm, perspective view without framing arch. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XXXIX, “Hall of the Abencerrages,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for plate XXXIX, “Hall of the Abencerrages,” pencil with some light inking, 33.5 × 26 cm. Perspective view without framing arch. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XL, “A Perspective View of the Golden Saloon, or Hall of Ambassadors,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library).
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     Drawing for plate XL, ink over pencil, 34 × 48 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XLII, “A Moorish Battle Piece, from a Painting in the Alhamra,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for plate XLII, pencil and colored wash, 26 × 36 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XLVIII, “An Arabian Vase and Niche, Preserved in the Alhamra,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for plate XLVIII, pencil and wash, 12 × 11 cm, ornament for spandrels of arch. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate LI, “Mosaic Ornament in the South Side of the Lions Court,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Proof of plate LI: black and white, 23.5 × 23.5 cm (top); proof of plate LI: colored with borders, 26.5 × 26.5 cm (bottom). (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate LV, “Mosaic in the Hall of the Abencerrages,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (­Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Proof of plate LV, outlined in inked but without border, 19.5 × 38 cm (top); colored proof of plate LV with green border, 25.5 × 34.5 cm (bottom). (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing in ink with colored washes for plate LV, 59 × 38 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate LXIII, “Mosaic in Portico of the Generaliffe,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (­Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Proof of plate LXIII, ink and jet black with border partly washed, 30.5 × 30.5 cm (top); drawing for plate LXIII, colored washes, 27.5 × 33.5 cm (bottom). (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate LXXXI, “Cufic Inscriptions and Ornament in the Golden Saloon,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for center ornament of plate LXXXI, pencil, 16.5 × 18 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate LXXXVIII, “Cornices, Capitals, and Columns in the Alhamra,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing of capital in central column of plate LXXXVIII, ink and wash over pencil, 29 × 20 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XCIII, “A Transverse Section of the Royal Villa of the Generaliffe at Granada,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for plate XCIII, bistre over pencil, 33 × 52 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XCV, “Perspective View of the Garden of the Generaliffe,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for plate XCV, pencil and wash with detailed ornament and foliage, 29.5 × 44 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Plate XCVI, “Elevation of the Casa de Carbon, or House of Charcoal, at Granada,” as published in Murphy’s Arabian Antiquities of Spain. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing for plate XCVI, ink and wash over pencil, with ornament in upper left inked and washed in detail, 49 × 34.5 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing of battlemented enclosure (identified as “Porta de Hierra Alhambra”) and surrounding vegetation, ink, 27.5 × 38 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing of same enclosure with tower alongside. Perspective view with plan above, pencil and wash, 17.5 × 17.5 cm. (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)
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     Drawing of arches with measurements: Puerta da Oliva, Santiago, bistre, 30 × 20 cm (top); La Porta a Rota, Xeres, bistre, 42 × 19 cm (bottom left); and Malaga, bistre, 52 × 38 cm (bottom right). (Photo: courtesy of American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Gennadius Library)

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