Los Desastres De La Guerra: Coleccion de ochenta láminas inventadas y grabadas al agua fuerte Por Don Francisco Goya.

Francisco Goya draughtsman etcher

RA Collection: Book

Record number



Francisco Goya, draughtsman, etcher

Variant Title

Disasters of war


Publícala la Rl. Academia de Nobles Artes de San Fernando., Madrid.: 1863.

Physical Description

[2] p., t.pl., 80 pl. (pl. 13/14 and 34/35 are transposed); 250×330 mm.


[T.pl.] -[Introductory note] - [Plates].

Responsibility Note

Ten of the plates are signed by Goya; the rest are unsigned.

The title-plate is signed as lithographed by J. Aragon.


A.E. Perez Sanchez and J. Gallego, Goya: the complete etchings and lithographs (1994); J. Blas, Goya grabador y litografo: repertorio bibliografico (1992); J.A. Tomlinson, Graphic evolutions: the print series of Francisco Goya (1989); T. Harris, Goya engravings and lithographs (2 v., 1964; repr. 1983); E.A. Sayre and J.S. Boggs, The changing image: prints by Francisco de Goya (1974), p.125-96.

Summary Note

The first plates for this series of prints appear to have been etched by Goya by 1810 (and two plates carry the date 1810 alongside his signature), but only working proofs were pulled for him during his lifetime. The Academia de San Fernando acquired eighty of the eighty-two plates in 1862, cleaned them, renumbered them (Goya's original numbers for several plates are visible bottom left), added the captions, and published them in 1863.

The disasters shown are based on Goya's observations of the conflict between the Spanish people and Napoleon's army at Zaragoza in 1808, and reports of other atrocities of the Peninsular War.

The prints have been admired not only for the intensity with which their subject is communicated, but also for their handling of the etching and other mixed media (burnished aquatint, drypoint, lavis and engraving).


Purchased for RA Library in 1878 (see RA Annual Report for 1878, p. 48).

Binding Note

19th-century half brown morocco, marbled-papered boards; spine lettered 'F. Goya - Los Desastres de La Guerra', 'R.A.' and 'Madrid 1863'.


Wars - Napoleonic Wars, 1800-1815 - Prisoners of war - Persecution - Atrocities - Torture - Soldiers - Spanish - French - Spain - 19th century
Drawings - Spain - 19th century
Pictorial works - Etchings - Aquatints - Spain - 19th century


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