Naturalia / Natural Things by Félicien Rops
This portfolio of twelve prints by Félicien Rops was bound by the Kinsey Institute in March 1951. The first prints, entitled Naturalia [Natural things], is a drypoint dating from the mid-1870s. In some states of the plate the title is specified as Naturalia non sunt Turpia [Natural things are not filthy things], in other states as Naturalia sunt Turpia [Natural things are filthy things]. At least one plate includes a quotation from Charles Baudelaire’s Paradis artificiels [Artificial Paradises]: “Les vices de l’homme, si pleins d’horreur qu’on les suppose, contiennent la preuve (quand ce ne serait que leur infinie expansion!) de son goût de l’infini” [The vices of man, however frightful they seem, contain the proof (if only in their infinite applications!) of his taste for the infinite] (transl. by Stacy Diamond). The second print is an undated etching entitled Le Ravissement de sœur Marie Alacoque [The Rapture of Sister Marie Soft-Boiled], which in some states includes this epigraph: “Deux fois par jour, les anges venaient la visiter et lui causaient mille ravissements. — Comment sont-ils faits? lui demanda la sœur supérieure. — Leurs membres sont comme ceux des hommes, répondit sœur Marie” [Twice a day, the angels came to visit her and gave her a thousand delights. – What are they like? asked the Sister Superior. - Their members are like those of men, said Sister Marie]. The third print is an undated etching entitled Hypocrisie, and the fourth print is an untitled and undated etching.