This section is from the book "Tapestries; Their Origin, History And Renaissance", by George Leland Hunter. Also available from Amazon: Tapestries; Their Origin, History, And Renaissance.
Colonel Astier gives photographic illustrations, from the Louvre petits patrons or from tapestries, of all of these scenes except nos. 1 and 7. He also makes an exhaustive study with illustrations of Scipio tapestries from other designs. Nos. 90 to 96 in Valencia Spanish are seven pieces from the original designs signed with the Brussels mark and a monogram, purchased by Mary of Hungary (See chapter IV (Flemish And Burgundian Looms)), and bequeathed by her to her brother Charles V on her death in 1558 (See plate no. 95).
Plate no. 305. Dido Showing Æneas the Plans of Carthage, one of a set of 8 Early XVII century tapestries picturing the Story of Dido and Æneas, designed by Giovanni Francesco Romanelli, the art director of the tapestry works established at Rome in 1633 by Cardinal Barberini, and woven by M. Wauters whose initials M. W. appear in the border of the tapestry illustrated.
Interesting sets in the Imperial Austrian Collection, picturing Greek and Roman history and mythology, are: the Story of Dido and Æneas in 8 pieces woven in the XVII century and signed M. WAUTERS or M W, after the designs of Romanelli; another set of the Story of Dido and Æneas in 8 pieces signed either I. V. BRUGGHEN or PEETER VANDER BERGHEN; a XVII century set of 8 pieces picturing the Life of the Emperor Augustus; a XVII century set of 5 pieces after Rubens picturing the Life of the Roman consul Decius Mus; a XVI century set in 9 pieces with Latin captions picturing the Story of Alexander the Great, signed with the Brussels mark and a monogram; a XVI century set in 9 pieces with Latin captions picturing the Story of Vertumnus and Pomona, signed with the Brussels mark and a monogram; a XVI century set of 8 pieces picturing the Story of Romulus and Remus, with Latin caption, signed with the Brussels mark and the monogram of Frans Van Geubels.
Among sets picturing contemporary history are: the Life and Deeds of Joâo de Castro, Viceroy of the Portugal Indies (died at Goa in 1548), in 9 pieces, with Brussels mark and a monogram, a XVI century set in the Imperial Austrian Collection; the Conquest of Tunis, a XVI century set in 9 pieces (originally 11), picturing the famous campaign of Charles V, after designs by Jean Vermayen (whose full length portrait appears in the first), signed with the Brussels mark and the monogram of Willem Van Pannemaker, with very long Spanish captions in the top borders and Latin captions in the bottom borders, in the Royal Spanish Collection; in the Imperial Austrian Collection a set of 10 pieces from the same cartoons signed with the Brussels mark and IUDOCUS DE VOS, whose contract, dated March 10, 1712, called for 6,654 3/4 louis d'or; the Battle of Pavia, a XVI century set in seven pieces after designs by Barend Van Orley, presented to the Emperor Charles V in 1531 by the States General of the Netherlands, in memory of his famous victory over the French at Pavia in 1524, now in the Naples Museum (See plate no. 309).
Plate no. 307. The Flaying of Marsyas by Apollo. A Renaissance tapestry in the Royal Spanish Collection. On the right is pictured the contest between the satyr Marsyas with his horn, and the god Apollo with his lyre, a contest won by the satyr, who is made to pay for his victory by being flayed alive as pictured in the foreground and told in the Latin caption.
The Pavia tapestries are 13 feet 9 inches high and from 25 feet 5 to 28 feet 11 wide; the Tunis tapestries, 17 feet high and from 23 feet 4 to 32 feet 6 wide. The subjects of the Pavia tapestries are:
(1) The attack of the yeomen and arquebusiers on the right wing of the French army (2) The French army opens out, but the Swiss refuse to advance. (3) The soldiers of the Black Band being almost all slain, the yeomenry storm the French King's fortified camp. (4) Flight of the Duke of Alençon across the Ticinus. (5) The Swiss driven into the Ticinus. (6) The French King François I in personal combat with the Marchese Civita di Sant' Angelo. (7) The capture of François I.
That evening François wrote to his mother: "Madam, pour vous faire savoir comment se porte le reste de mon infortune, de toutes choses ne m'est demeur6 que l'honneur, et la vie qui est sauvée. (Madam, to explain to you the rest of my misfortunes, the only thing left to me is honour, and my life that has been saved)".
Capture Of Francis I
Plate no. 309. The Capture of Francis I, a Renaissance tapestry in the Naples Museum. One of a set of seven designed by Barend Van Orley, illustrating the victory of Charles V at the Battle of Pavia (See chapter XIII (The Tapestry Point Of View)), presented to Charles V in 1531 by the States General of the Netherlands. The French King Francis I is designated in the tapestry by a cross on his left breast.
The subjects of the Tunis tapestries are:
(1) Map of the Mediterranean showing the ports of embarkation from Europe and the field of operations in Africa. (2) Review of the Emperor's army at Barcelona. (3) Arrival of the fleet at the site of ancient Carthage, and debarkation. (4) Battle outside La Goleta. (5) Sortie of the Turks from La Goleta. (6) Turks driven back into La Goleta. (7) Capture of La Goleta. (8) The Emperor advances on Tunis (missing from the Spanish set since the middle of the XVIII century). (9) Capture of Tunis. (10) Sack of Tunis. (11) Return of the army to Rada (missing from the Spanish set). (12) Re-embarkation of the army.
Interesting to compare with these Charles V tapestries - Tunis, Pavia, and Notre Dame du Sablon described in my chapter on Renaissance Tapestries - is the remarkable Gobelin set of 14 pieces picturing the Story of Louis XIV of France (See chapter VI (French Looms, The Gobelins: Beauvais: Aubusson)) which is admirably supplemented by the 12 Royal Residences.