There’s just so many different aspects to this piece that I wasn’t sure where to file it or what to call it. It appeared on the title page of a mathematics book from 1613. Yes, 1613 was when the book was published. Can you just imagine how different the world was then?
I’m guessing that the central figure is a queen because, I have seen a number of books dedicated to the reigning monarch – probably by an artist or scholar hoping to win favor or sponsorship from the royal family. As this book has changed hands, two of the owners also placed their seal on this page. I’ve included the original engraving along with some of the text and those two seals.
In the main image, we have the queen sitting in flowing robes and holding what looks like a bouquet of fruit. Her picture is surrounded some text. It is in Latin and unfortunately the letters of the fourth word are eluding me but it looks like the translation is something like “glorious truths here.” Based on the title, the book was about the solution to some mathematical theorem. Surrounding the queen and the motto, we have a number of cherubs sitting on columns and statuary. Two sprigs of some plant hang down from the columns on either side. The whole thing has a regal and royal feel to it.
I left this queen motif image as I found it. You can see the weave of the paper. Getting rid of all of the water spots and other damage would have undoubtably damaged the weave as well. I’ll leave it to you to decide how to edit this 400 year old engraving.
This image is copyright free and in the public domain anywhere that extends copyrights 70 years after death or at least 120 years after publication when the original illustrator is unknown.