The 3 Roads to Eternity
- Alternate Title:
- Les 3 Chemins de l’Eternite
- The 3 Roads to Eternity
- Persuasive Maps: PJ Mode Collection
- Georgin, François
- Posted Date:
- ID Number:
- File Name:
- 1800 - 1869
Heaven and Hell
- 38 x 58 (centimeters, height x width)
- The collection includes a number of allegorical "roadmaps" intended to encourage the viewer to act in conformity with religious norms. See Subjects > Heaven and Hell. This is a folk-art allegorical map based on Mathew 7:13-14, "Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it." In this version, there is a third gate, a middle gate. "Those who embark upon it bear the cross and the torch of faith," but abandon it. They "take the path parallel to that of the true believers, but their flame is extinguished, their torch overturned. Their road passes within sight of the heavenly Jerusalem, where the tree of life grows, but then turns sharply and descends toward the pit of fire . . . toward death and eternal damnation." Martin 1996, 81. While comparable English and American allegorical maps of the period had a more educational and optimistic tone (see ID # 1025, 1038, 1054, 1055), this one is much more in terrorem.
This map was produced in 1825 by Francois Georgin, "a popular and accomplished woodcutter" in the printshop of Jean-Charles Pellerin, in the Vosges mountain village of Epinal. Fabrique de Pellerin, founded in 1796, "was the heart and soul of the industry that came to mark the production of French imagery in the 19th century," the famous "Images d'Epinal." Martin 18. Pellerin produced a wide range of prints, including playing cards, paper soldiers, fairy tales, games, historical events and religious prints such as this one. The woodcuts were stenciled in bright colors by villagers and sold mostly in single sheets. "Used by one and all, posted in public houses, the shops of tradesmen and merchants, distributed as devotional images, cut out and glued into hymnals and bibles, mistreated by children eager for colour and delight," pinned up on the wall, "for decorative purposes, like wallpaper, to instruct or amuse, but not to last." Ibid. 20, 21.
Despite their ephemeral nature, Images d'Epinal that reached the United States though French Canadians "contributed to the emergence of popular American prints and likely even provided a model for Currier & Ives' fledgling print industry." Ibid. 22. Indeed, broadsides very similar to this one, in English and German, were published in the "Pennsylvania Dutch" country of Eastern Pennsylvania in the period c.1830-1840 by H. W. Villee and G. S. Peters. See Earnest 2005, 256-259.
For further information on the Collector’s Notes and a Feedback/Contact Link, see https://persuasivemaps.library.cornell.edu/content/about-collection-personal-statement and https://persuasivemaps.library.cornell.edu/content/feedback-and-contact
- Private Collection of PJ Mode
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