This fine print is the first etching of the well-known Rouen series** that Pissarro began in autumn 1883, and although small in format, it captures the bustling old town area with a deftly sketchy handling.
The picturesque motif of the Rue Malpalue so intrigued him that he produced a larger reworked version (D. 53) two years later.
* It should be remarked that, according to Delteil, this print is quite rare: he notes a total of only some ten impressions, including the posthumous edition. The present impression, unstamped and unnumbered, is apparently a proof prior to this exceedingly small edition.
** "The Rouen series is one of the most engaging he ever did, depicting the narrow crowded streets of the old city crowned by its beautiful cathedral." (Ludovic-Rodo Pissarro, "The Etched and Lithographed Work of Camille Pissarro", in Print Collector's Quarterly IX, pp. 275-301, 1922.)