Signed with the artist's monogram and dated at lower left, "1504". Inscribed in pencil on verso at lower right, "Amt. Gsell / No. 586"; numbered at lower left and lower right, "119".
Dürer achieved the classically proportioned figures of the Adam and Eve print through a significant amount of preliminary effort. This sheet shows the complexity of his preparatory trials. He joined two pieces of paper, a figure on each, and added a third vertical strip down the middle to create the appropriate distance between them. He then applied brown wash to unify the entire composition. Of the many drawings produced in connection with the print, this work is the only one to include both the male and female figures. That they each hold an apple, the temptation that led to their expulsion from the Garden of Eden, reveals Dürer's willingness to experiment as he resolved the composition. In the final print, he decided to place the apple only in Eve's hand.
Denison, Cara D., and Helen B. Mules, with the assistance of Jane V. Shoaf. European Drawings, 1375-1825. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1981, no. 32, repr.
From Leonardo to Pollock: Master drawings from the Morgan Library. New York: Morgan Library, 2006, cat. no. 51, p. 110-111.
Dürer, Agnes, former owner.
Dürer, Endres, former owner.
Pirckheimer, Willibald, 1470-1530, former owner.
Imhoff, Willibald, 1519-ca. 1579, former owner.
Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor, 1552-1612, former owner.
Andréossy, Antoine-François, comte, 1761-1828, former owner.
Gsell, Friedrich Jakob, former owner.
Lanna, Adalbert Franz Josef, Freiherr von, 1836-1909, former owner.
Morgan, J. Pierpont (John Pierpont), 1837-1913, former owner.