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Johannes Stradanus (Bruges 1523-Florence 1605)

Feeding the silkworms (I) c.1590

RCIN 904763

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These three preparatory drawings are for a series of engravings known as ‘Vermis Sericus’ (‘The Silkworm’), a history of the silkworm and silk-spinning by Karel de Malle, published by Philip Galle. On the left silkworms are shown growing on the branches of mulberry trees, their only food source. In the centre, women examine cocoons, while on the right mulberry leaves are drying.