THE SOUTH EAST PROSPECT OF THE CITY OF BRISTOL

Buck, Samuel and Nathaniel

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Title: THE SOUTH EAST PROSPECT OF THE CITY OF ...

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Samuel and Nathaniel Buck were brothers who were born in Yorkshire, England at around the turn of the 18th century. After spending their formative years in the north, they moved south to the great bustling metropolis that was London, as so many rural people did in those days, seeking their possible fame and fortune. As young men, around 1724, they set out and began an ambitious work to traverse each and every county within England and Wales. They began to engrave and prepare the particular county's 'antiquities' - be they free standing or semi ruinous castles, stately homes, or religious and monastic buildings of importance and consequence - although many were in an extremely poor state of neglect and abject disrepair after the first King Henry VIII in the 16th century, and then Oliver Cromwell later in the 17th century had their respective religious 'purges.' It was during the preparation of these collections of county 'antiquities' that the Buck brothers struck on the novel idea to also engrave some of the more important cities and towns. So, in my opinion, what resulted was the most wondrous, most influential and most important topographical undertaking that was ever done of England and Wales, not only of the 18th century but also for many years afterward. Prior to Buck's magnificent copper plate panoramas, virtually nothing had been done to depict views of significant English cities and towns. Only a handful were included in the atlas by Braun and Hogenberg in their Civitates Orbis Terrurum published in Cologne in 1581. I honestly feel that there is nothing at all to compare with these exquisite panoramas, in terms of technical skill, engraved detail and sheer scale and size. I also feel that a huge debt of gratitude is owed to these two enterprising and ambitious brothers, who have left us not only with a wonderful and enduring legacy, but also a truly unique 'glimpse' and brief insight into an English way of life that can never be replicated nor indeed pass our way ever again. 17.75 x 33.75. Bookseller Inventory #


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