Rembrandt Peale (1778-1860)
Patriae Pater (Father of his Country)
Lithograph on wove paper, 1827, 19-3/16 x 15-6/16, signed in the stone at l.l. "Drawn on Stone by Rembrandt Peale" "Copyright secured 1827" at center, and "Pendeltons Lithography Boston" at l.r. Below this in large script is the title "Washington", and below this "From the Original Portrait Painted by Rembrandt Peale". Considerable toning, most noticeably at the edges of the large margins, which measure 1--1/2 on the sides and 1-1/4 at top. The bottom margin extends 1/8 beyond the bottom line of text and seems to coincide with the embossing from the edge of the litho stone itself. A ¼" loss in the background above Washington's head has been skillfully restored as has a scrape on the cheek, rub to the chest at right, and scrape below the keystone. There is a diagonal break just outside the upper right image corner. The sheet has been backed with japan and is a remarkable survival considering it had been backed with canvas and on a stretcher with no glass when found! Extremely rare and important today, this lithograph was drawn on stone by Peale himself after his own famous "Porthole" portrait of George Washington, painted from life. Created two years after the first American lithograph, this large and impressive image is a technical "tour de force" in it's striking detail and subtle range of values and textures. Foremost however, is the emotional gravity with which Peale has imbued this portrait of our first president, making it an iconic image and a masterpiece of early American lithography.