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Ornament with Owl Mocked by Day Birds

A work made of engraving on cream laid paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of engraving on cream laid paper.


c. 1480


Master F.V.B. (Netherlandish, active 1475-1500)
after Martin Schongauer (German, c. 1430/50-1491)

About this artwork

The Netherlandish artist Master F. V. B. produced a close copy of Martin Schongauer’s print that appears in reverse as a result of the printing process. The subject was also known as a “bird concert” and continued to be popular for centuries. It consisted of diurnal birds making raucous fun of the helplessness of a nocturnal owl, which had been unwittingly stranded during the day. This particular owl seems to be slightly less blinded by the sun than others. He has secured some prey, and holds the small bird prisoner in his beak.


Currently Off View


Prints and Drawings


Master F.V.B.


Ornament with Owl Mocked by Day Birds


Netherlands (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

Made 1475–1485


Engraving on cream laid paper


Image/plate: 14.9 × 9.8 cm (5 7/8 × 3 7/8 in.); Sheet: 14.2 × 10 cm (5 5/8 × 3 15/16 in.)

Credit Line

Bequest of Mrs. Potter Palmer, Jr.

Reference Number


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Extended information about this artwork

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