Le Balbuzard
Alternative Title
Le Balbuzard. [Plate] 414
Martinet, François Nicolas, 1731- (Artist, Engraver)
Paris : L'Imprimerie Royal
Date created
[ca. 1770-1786]
Type of resource
Still image
Engravings (prints)
Digital origin
reformatted digital
François Nicolas Martinet (1725-1804), a French artist living during the late Enlightenment Era, blends science with art in his numerous works. His passion for ornithology led him to collaborate with several notable natural historians, including Georges-Louis Leclerc, Count of Buffon. Martinet created a total of one thousand eight prints for Buffon's extensive Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux, from which the plates in this collection derive. Depicting birds in their natural habitats, the plates began as copperplate engravings and later received color from an unknown colorist, possibly Martinet himself. These avian prints emphasize scientific accuracy and natural beauty.
Martinet's print Le Balbuzard portrays an osprey with technical exactitude. Created as plate four hundred fourteen for Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux between 1770 and 1786, Le Balbuzard seeks to present its subject as naturally as possible. Martinet shifts the view of the osprey from a traditional profile to a more informative three-quarter pose. By including elements of the bird's habitat in the background, Martinet maximizes the visual information about the species. His meticulous textures and values accurately render the osprey, while a measured bar along the upper border informs the viewer of the scale of the piece. Martinet ensures precision when rendering Le Balbuzard.
Related item
Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux
Avian Life Prints
Subjects and keywords
Pandion haliaetus
Birds of prey
Permanent URL
Northeastern University Library
Use and reproduction
No Copyright. The organization that has made the Item available believes that the Item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States, but a determination was not made as to its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. The Item may not be in the Public Domain under the laws of other countries. Please refer to the organization that has made the Item available for more information. http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/NoC-US/1.0/


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