The artistic representations of Tódor Batthyány's ships
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Count Tódor Batthyány, the youngest son of the palatine Lajos Batthyány became well-known for his technological and agricultural plans. He pursued an up-to-date economy on his estate and established manufactories. Moreover, he worked out a plan to control the water-ways of Danube-Száva-Kulpa. He also paid great attention to current technical discoveries. His library, now incorporated into the Library of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, proves his professional interests. The Bucentaurus, a ship Batthyány was most famous for, was able to proceed against currents and was driven by animals. It was patented in 1793. Although these shipping experiments failed to bring greater technical results, several of their artistic representations survived. Apart from construction plans, thirteen ink-drawings, watercolours and engravings were made in order to commemorate the shipwright works in Bratislava and the processions of the Bucentaurus between 1793 and 1802. The model of the Bucentaurus seems to have existed until 1918 when disappeared from the Körmend Castle. The aforementioned pictures differ not only in quality but in subjects as well, from the merely factual to the allegorical. Only four depictions are signed, one by engineer Löhr, the other three by engravers Krai, Johann Ziegler and Johann Philip Binder.
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