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Contributions to Ornithology

Sir William Jardine (1800-1874), Drawings for Contributions to Ornithology, no date. Index to plates inserted. Graphic Arts division GC025

This two volume scrapbook contains 131 leaves of mounted drawings, pattern plates for the colorist, and uncolored proof impressions compiled by the Scottish naturalist William Jardine for his five volume Contributions to Ornithology. The project followed directly after his hugely popular 40 volume Naturalist Library published in 1843 (GAX 2007-0067N), which established his position in Victorian society and his reputation as an ornithologist.

Contributions was issued in parts from 1848 to 1852 and is considered the first British periodical devoted to ornithology. Jardine meant the series to be an annual updating of the latest ornithological information. It was a family project with Jardine as principal organizer, artist, and author. His daughter Catherine Strickland executed many of the plates and his other daughter Helen did some drawing. Other contributors included T.C. Eyton, John Gould, and Philip Sclater.

For more information, see Christine Elisabeth Jackson and Peter Davis, Sir William Jardine: a Life in Natural History (London: Leicester University Press, 2001) Annex B, Fine Hall, QH31.J37 J23 2001

Photoxylography and Timothy Cole

Timothy Cole (1852-1931), Abraham Lincoln, 1928. Wood engraving. Graphic Arts division GC030.
Timothy Cole (1852-1931), Untitled portrait of white-haired man, 1917. Wood engraving. Graphic Arts division GC030.

Timothy Cole (not to be confused with the painter Thomas Cole) was a “new school” reproductive wood engraver who made a career of reproducing famous works of art for Scribner’s Monthly. His technique, developed in the 1870s, involved painting a wood block with light-sensitive chemistry, then placing a photographic negative on the block, and developing out the image in a few minutes of sunlight. This allowed him to carve the block without redrawing the image and to create an ink print that had all the subtly of the continuous tone photograph. The technique is sometimes called “photoxylography.”

“Now the engraving is nothing, absolutely nothing,” wrote Cole. “It is the reproduction of the original alone that concerns me … [The engraver] must not speak his own words, nor do his own works, nor think his own thoughts, but must be the organ through which the mind of the artist speaks.”

“Old school” engravers deplored the “new school” kids. William James Linton wrote many articles against reproduction without interpretation, including “Art in Engraving on Wood,” Atlantic Monthly June 1879, criticizing Timothy Cole in particular. As often happens, the younger generation won out and most wood cutting from then on was done with the assistance of photography.

Timothy Cole (1852-1931) after a painting by John Singer Sargent (1856-1925), John D. Rockefeller, Sr., 1921. Wood engraving. Graphic Arts division GC030.

Timothy Cole (1852-1931) after a painting by Albert Gustaf Aristide Edelfelt (1854-1905), Louis Pasteur in His Laboratory, Paris, 1925. Wood engraving. Graphic Arts division GC030.

Paul Landacre


Jake Zeitlin (1902-198) moved to Los Angeles in 1925 and in only two years, was operating one of the most popular bookstores in the city. Nicknamed At the Sign of the Grasshopper because of the symbol on the front, the shop became a local hangout for writers and artists, who browsed the shelves and enjoyed works of visual art in the shop’s small gallery.

One of the local artists Zeitlin introduced to the neighborhood was Paul Landacre (1893-1963) whose first one-man show was held at the bookstore in 1930 and received a favorable reviewed by Arthur Millier in Prints magazine. The Zeitlin’s and the Landacre’s became good friends and Paul’s wife Margaret even worked as a secretary for the bookshop.

When Zeitlin established his own publishing imprint, Primavera Press, Landacre was asked to illustrate many of the books. The first in 1933 was Marguerite Wilbur’s translation of Alexandre Dumas’ gold rush novel A Gil Blas in California. Pictured at the left is a recently acquired sheet of proofs for chapter headings in this book.

1933 was a busy year for Landacre, who submitted designs for the proposed Limited Editions publication of W.H. Hudson’s Green Mansions. Although some proof pages were printed by Grant Dahlstrom, the design was not selected and these chapter headings (top and bottom) were never published. Note, as Jake Wien below reminds us, that Landacre went on to illustrate three future editions for the Club.

For a bibliography of Primavera Press, see A Garland for Jake Zeitlin, on the occasion of his 65th birthday & the anniversary of his 40th year in the book trade (Los Angeles: Grant Dahlstrom & Saul Marks, 1967) Firestone Library (F) 0334.993.37

Horrifying Stories from Chile


Guillermo Frommer (born 1953), Relatos espeluznantes [Horrifying Stories] (Santiago, Chile: [printed at the Taller Artes Visuales], 2006). 63 cm. The first volume of the series was published in 2003. This is number two. It is unclear whether there will be others. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize 2008-0025E

The Chilean artist Guillermo Frommer had an international education in printmaking. Both his parents were artists and he made his first prints under their direction in Chile. In the 1970s, he studied at the University of Ottawa, Canada, and then, received a degree from the Ontario College of Art in Toronto. His interest in lithography led to a residency at the Tamarind Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Although Tamarind is known primarily for its stone printing, Frommer also worked with xylography, engraving, and silkscreen.

When he returned to Chile in 1987, Frommer joined the Visual Arts Workshop (Taller Artes Visuales or TAV), a printing collective founded in 1974 by artists exempted from the Faculty of Arts at the University of Chile. Today, Frommer is a professor of printing in Santiago and continues to create his own work through the TAV.

Scenes from Shakespeare

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Henry William Bunbury (1750-1811), Twenty-Two Plates Illustrative of Various Interesting Scenes in the Plays of Shakspeare (London: Published originally by the late T. Macklin, sold by J. Nichols & son, [1792-1796]). Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Oversize Rowlandson 1792.2e

Around the end of the eighteenth century, the most successful London print shop was the Shakespeare Gallery, run by John Boydell. Their most famous project was a series of over one hundred extravagantly large engravings illustrating well-known scenes from Shakespeare’s plays. Boydell’s success led to many imitations, such as the Woodmason’s Shakespeare Gallery and the Irish Shakespeare Gallery. The most ambitious was the Poet’s Gallery, managed by Thomas Macklin.

Macklin hired the popular caricaturist Henry Bunbury to create a similar series of pen and ink and watercolor drawings to illustrate Shakespeare’s plays. Bunbury chose comic, often obscure scenes, emphasizing the outlandish and the ridiculous. His designs were engraved over five year by Francesco Bartolozzi (1727-1815), Peltro William Tomkins (1760-1840), Thomas Cheeseman (active 1780-1790), and Robert Mitchell Meadows (died 1812). The artists only finished twenty-two prints, which in the end was no real competition for Boydell.

See also Andrew White Tuer (1838-1900), Bartolozzi and his works: a biographical and descriptive account of the life and career of Francesco Bartolozzi, R.A. (illustrated): with some observations on the present demand for and value of his prints …: together with a list of upwards of 2,000 … of the great engraver’s works (London: Field & Tuer; New York: Scribner & Welford, [1882]) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Oversize Rowlandson 953.2q

The Four Stages of Cruelty

William Hogarth, First Stage of Cruelty, 1 February 1751. Etching and engraving. Graphic Arts GA113

William Hogarth, Second Stage of Cruelty, 1 February 1751. Etching and engraving. Graphic Arts GA113

William Hogarth, Cruelty in Perfection, 1 February 1751. Etching and engraving. Graphic Arts GA113

William Hogarth, The Reward of Cruelty, 1 February 1751. Etching and engraving. Graphic Arts GA113

William Hogarth (1697-1764) created this print series “in the hopes of preventing in some degree that cruel treatment of poor Animals which makes the streets of London more disagreeable to the human mind, than any thing what ever….”
The first plate finds Tom Nero (center) as a young boy torchering a dog.

Text transcribed:

While various Scenes of sportive Woe
The Infant Race employ.
And tortur’d Victims bleeding shew
The Tyrant in the boy

Behold a Youth of gentler Heart
To spare the Creature’s pain
O take, he cries — take all my Tart.
But Tears and Tart are vain.

Learn from this fair Example — You
Whom savage Sports delight
How Cruelty disgusts the view
While Pity charms the sight.

In the second plate, Nero is a young man working as a coach driver. He has been mistreating his horse, which now has a broken leg. All around them are examples of cruelty to animals on the public streets of London.

The generous Steed in hoary Age
Subdu’d by Labour lies,
And mourns a cruel Master’s rage,
While Nature Strength denies.

The tender lamb o’er drove and faint
Amidst expiring Throws
Bleats forth its innocent complaint
And dies beneath the Blows.

Inhuman Wretch! Say whence proceeds
This coward Cruelty?
What Int’rest springs from barb’rous deeds?
What Joy from Misery?

In Hogarth’s third plate, Nero has become a highway robber. He is being apprehended for killing Ann Gill, his pregnant lover.

To lawless love when once betray’d,
soon crime to crime succeeds:
At length beguil’d to theft,
the maid By her beguiler bleeds.

Yet learn, Seducing Man.’nor Night.
with all its sable Cloud.
Can screen the guilty deed from sight;
Foul Murder cries aloud.

The gaping Wounds, and blood stain’d steel.
Now shock his trembling Soul:
But Oh! what Pangs his Breast must feel.
When Death his knell shall toll.

In the final scene, Nero has been hanged and his body is being dissected in the Cutlerian theatre near Newgate prison. The public was invited to view these gruesome dissections and this scene reflects back on the first plate, where the young boys staged their own theater of gruesome operations.

Behold the Villain’s dire disgrace!
Not Death itself can end.
He finds no peaceful Burial-place;
His breathless Corse, no friend.

Torn from the Root, that nicked Tongue,
Which daily snore and curst!
Those Eyeballs, from their Sockets nrung,
That glori’d with lawless lust!

His Heart, expos’d to prying Eyes,
To Pity has no Claim:
But, dreadful! from his Bones shall rise,
His Monument of shame.

Hindu Gods

Hindu Gods ([India?: s.n., ca. 1850]). This volume consists exclusively of 78 hand-colored drawings of Hindu gods. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) ND2047 .H562 1850. Gift of Hibben (Class of 1924) and Mrs. Ziesing.

Théâtre des Champs-Élysées and La Revue Nègre

Paul Colin (1892-1985), Le tumulte noir (Paris: Editions d’Art Succès, [1927]). Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize 2003-0018E

Paul Colin created posters and stage designs for theaters throughout Paris in the 1920s. His favorite was the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, where La Revue Nègre performed led by the dancer Josephine Baker (1906-1975). In 1927, Colin was inspired by the Revue to create a portfolio entitled Le Tumulte Noir or The Black Craze. He drew his designs directly onto lithographic stones, which were printed in black, brown, or gray inks and then, hand-colored by the master of pochoir, Jean Saudé. The images include many figures of contemporary French popular culture, such as Maurice Chevalier, Ida Rubinstein, the film actress Jane Marnac, the theatrical caricaturist Sem, and others.

For more information, see the introduction by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Karen C.C. Dalton in Josephine Baker and La revue nègre (1998). Marquand Library Oversize NE2349.5.C66 A4 1998q

Tea Tax Tempest

Carl Gottlieb Guttenberg (1743-1790), The Tea Tax Tempest, or the Anglo-American Revolution, 1778. Engraving. GC077, Graphic Arts 2-14-G.
Reproduction from Amelia Rauser, “Death or Liberty: British Political Prints and the Struggle for Symbols in the American Revolution,” Oxford Art Journal, 21, No. 2 (1998), 155.
Reproduction from British Museum: A Tea-Tax-Tempest or Old Time with His Magick-Lantern (London: William Humphrey, 1783).

In this 41 x 49 cm. engraving, the winged figure of Father Time is seen balancing a magic lantern on a globe of the world. The image being projected has at its center a steaming tea pot (the American Revolution), cooking on a fire fanned by a cock (symbolizing France), with British soldiers on one side and American soldiers on the other. Time is explaining the scene to four viewers, who represent America, Africa, Europe, and Asia.

Guttenberg was not the original artist of this scene but only adapted it from a 1774 print by John Dixon, shown at the left. Dixon’s print, entitled The Oracle, was suppose to portray a hopeful view of Great Britain at a time when not only America but Scotland and Ireland were threatening revolt. Guttenberg literally reverses the image and replaces the pastoral scene with one of impending war.

Not to be undone by the German artist, an unidentified British caricaturist redrew the print once more in 1783 and put words into Father Time’s mouth:

There you see the little Hot Spit Fire Tea pot that has done all the Mischief - There you see the Old British Lion basking before the American Bon Fire whilst the French Cock is blowing up a storm about his Ears to Destroy him and his young Welpes - There you See Miss America grasping at the Cap of Liberty - There you see The British Forces be yok’d and be cramp’d flying before the Congress Men - There you see the thirteen Stripes and Rattle-Snake exalted - There you see the Stamp’d Paper help to make the Pot Boil -There you See &c &c &c.

Some copies of Guttenberg’s print include the title engraved in English, French, and German. Princeton’s impression has only the English.

Combat Paper Portfolio

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You Are Not My Enemy. Combat Paper Portfolio 4 (Vermont: People’s Republic of Paper, 2008). Copy 8 of 8. Graphic Arts (GAX) 2008- in process

After six years in the army…[Drew] Cameron moved to Vermont and took a $10 papermaking course at a community college. Something clicked. He began practicing the trade out of the Green Door Studio artists’ collective in Burlington. One night back in 2007, Cameron took his old fatigues out of the closet. “I hadn’t put that thing on my body since Iraq,” he says. “I was thinking about it systematically at first. Where do I cut? Well, I’ll start with my left arm. Then I started feeling this overwhelming feeling of empowerment and emotional expression. I started ripping and pulling at my uniform until I was down to my skivvies.” From those scraps he created the first sheet of Combat Paper.

Combat Paper is a publication of the People’s Republic of Paper, a collaboration betwen Iraqi veterans, activists, and artists. This project is conceived & coordinated by Drew Matott, former director of Green Door Studio in Burlington, Vermont, and Drew Cameron, current director of Green Door Studio and an Iraq War Veteran.

Through papermaking workshops veterans use their uniforms worn in combat to create cathartic works of art. The uniforms are cut up, literally beaten to a pulp, and formed into sheets of paper. Veterans use the transformative process of papermaking to reclaim their uniform as art and begin to embrace their experiences as a soldier in war.

For more information on the Combat Paper Project, see:

One of several videos of the project can be seen at:

New Year's Gifts for the People

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J.J. Grandville (1803-1847), Etrennes au Peuple (New Year’s Gifts for the People). Lithograph on China paper. Published in La Caricature, no 113, planche 235, January 3, 1833.

The French caricaturist Jean Ignace Isidore Gérard, working under the pseudonym of J.J. Grandville, created a number of plates for French magazines including Le Silhouette, L’Artiste, Le Charivari, and La Caricature. This satirical scene denounces the repressive actions of the French government under Louis-Philippe, which sought to limit freedom of the press and personal expression. The image presents a man being stabbed in the back and pelted with a rain of iconic objects, including pears (representing Louis-Philippe), crutches (Talleyrand, who was then ambassador in London), a parsley pot (Jean-Charles Persil who attacked the newspapers as a prosecutor under Louis-Philippe), guns, chains, keys, bolts, cross, medals, cords, scissors, hats, bell and shoes, each representing members of the government.

This print is part of a recent donation generously given by Dr. William Helfand, president of the Grolier Club and a consultant to the National Library of Medicine, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and other institutions in areas relating to art and medicine. Dr. Helfand has written five books including Quack, Quack, Quack: the Sellers of Nostrums in Prints, Posters, Ephemera & Books… (GA Oversize 2005-0625Q), and The Picture of Health (Marquand Library N8223 .H44 1991) He has also published a number of articles on prints, caricatures, posters and ephemera relating to pharmacy and medicine. This posting shows only a few of the wonderful eighteenth- and nineteenth-century prints coming to Princeton thanks to Dr. Helfand.

Paul Gavarni (1804-1866), Enfant Terrible, 1833. Lithograph.

Honoré Daumier (1808-1879), Le Malade imaginaire (Hypocondriac), 1833. Lithograph.

After the painting by Thomas Wyck (ca.1616-1677), The Alchemist in his Laboratory. Engraving, ca. 1700.

Engraved by Jean-Jacques de Boissieu (1736-1810) after a drawing by Karl Du Jardin, Les Grands Charlatans, or Charlatan with guitar player and crowd. Engraving (drawing 1657), printed 1772.

The Penographic

…the writer is enabled to use it for 10 or 12 hours with the same ease as with a pencil…!

Patent Penographic or Writing Instrument [broadside] (London: W. Robson & Co., ca.1819). Graphic Arts division GAX 2008- in process

Scheffer’s Penographic, patented in 1819, was one of the first workable fountain pens. Its secret was a flexible tube made of a goose quill and pig’s bladder. Pressure was exerted on a lever and a knob to propel ink into the nib when desired.

The End of the Stock-Market World

Last December 2007, I posted an entry on Het Groote Tafereel der Dwaasheid or The Great Mirror of Folly. Each edition has a slightly different group of prints: Harvard’s copy has 71, Princeton’s 73, and each includes several not in the other volume.

This page, originally engraved by Monogrammist C L, later altered by an anonymous 18th-century Dutch engraver after Pieter Quast (1606-1647) and entitled De Actiewerld op Haar Ende (The End of the Stock-Market World), is included in Harvard’s copy but not Princeton’s. However, we recently acquired an impression to help complete our collection of the prints for in this anonymous 1720 project.

The central figure in this caricature is the philosopher Diogenes (ca. 412-323 BCE). Considered the founder of Cynicism, he eschewed worldly pleasures, wore coarse clothing, and pursued practical good. He is often shown carrying a lantern, searching for an honest person, but in this print his lantern has been given away (presumably having given up finding an honest man). He has lost everything in the stock-market bubble of 1720 from investing in the South Seas Company. As the text beneath the image concludes,

How easily can such a flier be upset by a South Sea blast or a Quinquempoix* bubble! So whoever gives his name and honor for the money, and adores it like an idol, deserves to be scorned in this fashion.

*Quinquempoix was the name of the street where the Parisian money market was located.

This print was first engraved around 1670 by the Monogrammist C L to satirize the tulip mania in the Netherlands. The plate was then altered to satirize the stock-market speculation of 1720.

Verdun from the Meuse


James Alphege Brewer (fl.1909-1938), Verdun from the Meuse, 1916. Etching with watercolor, signed and titled in pencil. GA 2008.01068

The biography of J. Alphege Brewer has yet to be written and details are sketchy. He was the son of the artist H. W. Brewer and his brother H. C. Brewer also painted. Alphege was born around 1882 in Great Britain but moved to Paris, where he lived most of his professional career. He was especially successful drawing architectural views of the great cathedrals of France.

This view of the medieval city of Verdun, in the Lorraine region of northeast France, is typical of Brewer’s work. The river Meuse in the foreground places the viewer on a low horizon, giving the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Verdun a dramatic central focus.

We are grateful to Robert Milevski, our Preservation Librarian, for bringing this work to the attention of the Graphic Arts division.

George Washington 1732-1799

Charles Henry Hart (1847-1918), Catalogue of the Engraved Portraits of Washington (New York: The Grolier Club, 1904). “One of an edition of four hundred and twenty-five copies printed on American hand-made paper …” Graphic Arts division GAX 2008- in process

In 1904, the Grolier Club in New York City published a sumptuous, limited edition catalogue in honor of the centenary of George Washington’s death. The book features not only a complete listing of Washington portrait engravings but also 31 original mezzotint and photogravure prints.

Frank O. Briggs, of Trenton, N.J. purchased a copy, which eventually made it to the graphic arts division at Princeton University. Inside the front cover are a number of sheets of cream wove paper with the watermark of George Washington.

“Photogravure after mezzotint engraved by Valentine Green.”
“Engraved in mezzotint by S. Arlent Edwards from an original in oil, which was probably executed in 1798 or 1799.”

The Miliani Mill, Fabriano, Italy, created this watermark of Washington in recognition of the bicentennial celebration of his birth in 1932. Later, the Graphic Arts collection used it as a keepsake for their friends. The portrait is after a bust of Washington done by the sculptor Jean-Antoine Houdon, who visited Mount Vernon in 1785. Houdon’s profile is said to have been one of Washington’s favorites.

“Photogravure after line engraving
attributed to John Norman.”

Cuban postcards

Artists Unidentified. Postcards of Cuba, no dates but approximately 1900-1920. Graphic Arts division, GC141 Postcards Collection

The graphic arts division has a number of postcard collections, this one includes 2,393 postcards of Cuba. Most are collotypes and half-tone images, but a few have original photographs or prints. The collection now has a complete finding aid, thanks to the wonderful processing of Kate Carroll, class of 2009. Here’s a summary:

Box 1 Havana: homes, buildings, parks, plazas and surroundings.

Box 2 Havana: Views of the bay, harbors, main monuments, ships, fortresses, ramparts, aerial views and streets.

Box 3 Havana: Churches, monuments, cemetery, streets. Includes four famous postcards series, tourism ads, Bacardi and beer ads and patriotic propaganda related to the US and Cuba.

Box 4 Havana: Hotels, beaches, clubs, casinos, zoo, cabarets, restaurants, musicians, carnival, hippodrome, theatre, bull fights and cockfights.

Box 5 Life in Cuba and the country: Sugar cane industry, tobacco industry, homes, palms, rivers, transportation, soldiers, families, children, typical scenes, carriages, shops and street sellers.

Box 6 Cities from the interior: Pinar del Rio, Isla de Pinos, Matanzas, Cardenas, Varadero, Santa Clara, Cienfuegos, Camaguey, etc.

Box 7 Oriente: Santiago de Cuba, Guantanamo and other regions.

Box 8 Oversize.

Paul Sandby

Paul Sandby, Album of 18th-century Scottish etchings. Graphic Arts division (GAX) GA2008- in process

Called the father of English watercolor, Paul Sandby (1731-1809) was a founding member of the Royal Academy of Arts, London. This album stems from Sandby’s early Scottish period, when he was a draughtsman with the military survey of the highlands. It holds 75 etchings on 27 sheets, assembled and printed by the artist, with dates ranging from 1747 to 1758. The etchings are primarily landscapes, with occassional Scottish street characters intermixed. One holds the comment “etched on the spot P. Sandby 1750.”

The album, with late 18th century half calf and blue/greenish marbled paper covered boards, has no title page. The only identification is a book label reading “Fasque,” which is a Scottish country house in Kincardineshire, built in 1809. The estate was purchased in 1829 by Sir John Gladstone, father of William Gladstone.

The Pic-Nic Orchestra

Edward Francis Burney (1760-1848) after James Gillray (1757-1815), The Pic-Nic Orchestra, ca.1802. Pen and ink drawing, watercolor. Transferred to graphic arts division (GAX) 2008- in process

The Pic-Nic Society was an exclusive London club, under the leadership of Lady Albina Buckinghamshire (seen here at the piano). They performed fashionable amusements for private aristocratic audiences, which were mercilessly attacked by the newspaper critics and journalists. The British caricaturist James Gillray printed at least three satires of the group, including the design seen here. The sheet owned by Princeton is attributed to Edward Francis Burney, completed after the Gilray hand-colored print was published by Hannah Humphrey on 23 April 1802 from her St. James’s Street print shop.

Also taking part in the performance is Colonel Henry Francis Greville, playing a fiddle. Note the paper hanging from his coat pocket. In the final print, words were added: “Pic Nic Concert—Imitations—Nightingale by Lord C.—Tom Tit Lord ME—Jack daw Gent G.—Screech Owl Lady B—Poll Parrot…” Perhaps the words were too small for Burney to duplicate with the brush.

On the left is Lord Mount (Richard) Edgcumbe playing a cello and behind him is Lord George James Cholmondeley on the flute. Seated on the pianist’s left is Lady Salisbury (Mary Amelia) playing the French horn with one hand. To the extreme right, opposite Greville, is an unidentified lady’s arm holding a trumpet.


Thomas Wright (1810-1877), Historical and descriptive account of the caricatures of James Gillray: comprising a political and humorous history of the latter part of the reign of George the Third (London: Henry G. Bohn, 1851.) Rare Books (Ex) NE642.G42 W9

Draper Hill, Mr. Gillray the caricaturist, a biography (Greenwich, Conn., Phaidon Publishers, [1965]) Firestone Library (F) NE642.G42 H5

James Gillray (1756-1815), The works of James Gillray, the caricaturist: with the story of his life and times (London: Chatto and Windus, [1873]) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Rowlandson 989.2


Robert Burford (1791-1861), A Miscellaneous Collection of Panoramas and Others (London, 1821-32). 14 v. in 1. Graphic Arts division (GAX) in process

Panoramic displays, offering 360 degree views of exotic scenes, were enormously popular in the 1800s. Some were cleverly painted and lit to give the illusion of day turning into night. Some showed important historical events, such as battle scenes.

The panorama was invented about 1787 by the Scottish-Irish artist Robert Barker (1739-1806). From 1794 to 1863, his family ran an exhibition theater on Leicester Square, where the largest views were about 30 feet high by 90 feet across. Barker’s success led to many others such theaters throughout Europe and the United States.

Barker applied for a patent for his invention, which he called La nature à coup d’oeil, for “representing natural objects … designed so as to make observers, on whatever situation he may wish they should imagine themselves, feel as if really on the very spot.”

For more information, see the CUNY website:

No.1, Guide to the model of the battle of Waterloo.
No.2, A descriptive account of a series of pictures, representing some of the most important battles fought by the French armies in Egypt, Italy, Germany and Spain between the years 1792 and 1812.
No.3, Description of the Egyptian tomb, discovered by G.Belzoni.
No.4, Description du mausolée du maréchal Comte de Saxe, érigé dans l’Église de St.-Thomas, à Strasbourg.
No.5, Description of a view of the city and lake of Geneva, and surrounding country.
No.6, Description of a view of the town of Sydney, New South Wales; the harbour of Port Jackson and surrounding country.
No.7, Description of a view of the city of Florence, and the surrounding country.
No.8, Descriptive catalogue of the gallery of Europe & America.
No.9, Descriptive catalogue of the gallery of Asia & Africa.
No.10, Descriptive catalogue of the cosmorama panoramic exhibition, 209, Regent Street.
No.11, Description of the island and city of Corfu
No.12, Catalogue of the exhibition, called Modern Mexico.
No.13, Description of a view of the city of Mexico, and surrounding country.
No.14, Description of a view of the city of Edinburgh, and surrounding country.

Thomas Bewick

At the close of the 18th century, printmaking was revolutionized by the English wood engraver Thomas Bewick (1753-1828), and the German lithographer Aloys Senefelder (1771-1834). The processes developed by these men brought innovation in fine art printing and in commercial book illustration.

Copperplate engraving

copperplate engraving

Wood engraving

Bewick is remembered for his wood engraved masterworks A General History of Quadrupeds (1790), and History of British Birds Vol. I (1797), Vol. II (1804). However, his firm printed work in all media, including engraved wood, glass, silver, and traditional copperplate engraving.

Wood engraving

Wood engraving

Copperplate engraving

When Bewick died in 1828, his son Robert took over the business and published two further editions of the Birds in 1832 and 1847, and a large wood engraved Waiting for Death in 1832. After the death of the rest of the family, Julia Boyd compiled the volume seen here, documenting both copperplate and wood engravings in Bewick Gleanings: Being Impressions from Copperplates and Wood Blocks Engraved in the Bewick Workshop… (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Andrew Reid, 1886). Graphic Arts: Reference Collection (GARF) Oversize NE1212.B5 xB6q

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