Edgar Chahine was born in 1874 in Venice, Italy to Armenian parents and spent his youth in Constantinople. Prior to relocating to Paris in 1895, he spent time in Venice where he studied under Paoletti and at the Academia di Belle Arti.
He began making intaglio prints in the late 1890s, frequently mixing media to achieve the desired effects. Encouraged by Edmund Sagot and Eugene Delâtre, he continued making prints, which were characterized by his precise use of line. Chahine worked in drypoint, etching and aquatint, combining all these media.
In 1925, he became a French citizen and began a burst of creative activity in illustrated books and fine prints. Many of his prints were destroyed in a fire in his atelier in 1926 and many more in a flood in 1942. Throughout his career he executed over 600 etchings, some in color.