Rodolphe Töpffer (1799 – 1846)

He was born and died in Geneva. Studied literature and became a teacher and docent at the University. In his free time he wrote short illustrated stories. Such as:   Histoire de Monsieur Jabot Monsier Crepin Histoire de Monsieur Vieux Bois Monsieur Pencil    Histoire de Monsieur Cryptogramme 1845- 1858  (Reizen en Avonturen van Mijnh... Continue Reading →


Johann Caspar Lavater (1741-1801)

Lavater was a Swiss theologian and minister in the Saint Peters church in Zurich. He belongs to the nomination of pietism fostering an intuitive and emotionally form of Christianity. To promote mutual understanding and love between people, he embarked as amateur psychologist in the field of physiognomy. From 1775 he published four parts "Physiognomische Fragmente". According to... Continue Reading →

Daniel Chodowiecki (1726-1801)

Daniel Chodowiecki, born in Danzig and died in Berlin, is one of the little masters, but interested in representing emotions. In the art of printing at that time this was something new. Long time it was not common knowledge that a large proportion of the illustrations in the books of Lavater were made by Chodowiecki, who... Continue Reading →

Charles le Brun (1619 – 1690)

ROYAL ACADEMY Following the Academies in Italy the French Royal Academy was founded in 1648 at the instigation of the painter Charles le Brun, with the consent of the young king and protected by Mazarin. This Academy proposed also an emancipation of the artist, who until now was considered still too much as a craftsman... Continue Reading →

Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640)

RUBENS AND THE ANIMAL-HUMAN COMPARISON Rubens made no cartoons nor incidentally satirizing images, but he is interesting in the context of physiognomy, and specifically in the animal-human comparison. This subject is treated in the writings of Lavater.  Della Porta gave the example of the “Sheep-Man”. On authority of Lavater, della Porta and Sulzer orthodox physiognomy accepted... Continue Reading →

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