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COLLECTION Identifier: TCS 47

Harvard Theatre Collection prints (visual works) of scenography


Contains prints, mainly etchings, of theatrical designs dating from the late sixteenth to mid-nineteenth century.


  • circa 1589-1840

Language of Materials

French, Italian, Latin, and German

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material. Collection is open for research.


1 linear feet (1 box and 77 oversize folders)

Contains etchings and engravings featuring depictions of scenography. Most of the scenography dates from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, with some from the sixteenth and nineteen century, and feature theatrical scene designs often from opera and ballet productions at the royal courts mainly in Italy and Spain. Artists include Ferdinando Galli Bibiena (1657-1743) and Giuseppe Galli Bibiena (1696-1757), Abraham Bosse (1602-1676), Ludovico Ottavio Burnacini (1636-1707), Stefano Della Bella (1610-1664), Pietro Righini (1683-1742), Ferdinando Tacca (1619-1686), and Giuseppe Torelli (1658-1709), among others. Some of the scenes are identified from known productions, such as “La Zenobia di Radamisto”, “La Nozzi Deglo Dei”, “Medo”, “L’Opera de Venus Jalouse,” and others, as well as from celebrations or events. A few prints of designs by Karl Friedrich Schinkel (1781-1841) from his texts on theatrical production design, including "Sammlung von Theater-Dekoration" and individual scenes, are included as well. Some of the scenography prints are by unidentified artists and depicts unidentified scenes; these have been loosely described based on subject matter.

Biographical / Historical

Include a short biographical or historical statement.


Arranged in alphabetical order by the surname of the artist. Prints by unidentified artists follow.

Physical Location

b, pfd (P1.C2.06.02 - P1.C2.06.03 [Folders 1-67]), ppf (P1.C2.06.04 [Folders 68-77])

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Various gifts and purchases at various dates. Known acquisition information is noted at the file level.

Processing Information

Processed by Betts Coup, 2018 October.

Harvard Theatre Collection. Harvard Theatre Collection prints (visual works) of scenography, circa 1589-1840 (TCS 47): Guide.
Houghton Library, Harvard University.
2018 October 01
Description rules
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, archives, and more. Houghton Library's collections represent the scope of human experience from ancient Egypt to twenty-first century Cambridge. With strengths primarily in North American and European history, literature, and culture, collections range in media from printed books and handwritten manuscripts to maps, drawings and paintings, prints, posters, photographs, film and audio recordings, and digital media, as well as costumes, theater props, and a wide range of other objects. Houghton Library has historically focused on collecting the written record of European and Eurocentric North American culture, yet it holds a large and diverse number of primary sources valuable for research on the languages, culture and history of indigenous peoples of the Americas, Africa, Asia and Oceania.

Houghton Library’s Reading Room is free and open to all who wish to use the library’s collections.

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