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Article

Jane Geddes

Deluxe manuscript (Aberdeen, U. Lib., MS. 24) made in England around 1200. It is remarkable for its lavish illustrations, amply covered in gold leaf; for the wealth of its codicological data and for its close relationship to the Ashmole Bestiary. The book was left unfinished, so sketches and the detailed instructions for its colouring and assembly remain visible. The last few pages were completed in the 14th century. The book begins with a Creation cycle of full-page miniatures culminating in Adam Naming the Animals and Christ in Majesty. A portrait or narrative illustration of each animal precedes every text description.

The manuscript contains the press mark of King Henry VIII’s library, mainly assembled after the dissolution of the monasteries, but its provenance before 1542 is not known. Muratova (1986, pp. 118–144) uses cumulative information from a group of related manuscripts to suggest a provenance in the north-east Midlands; Geddes (...

Article

Christian Michel

(b Paris, March 19, 1730; d Paris, March 7, 1809).

French engraver, illustrator and writer. He came from a poor family and trained with Guillaume Dheulland (c. 1700–c. 1770) by drawing cartouches for maps. He also had lessons from Pierre-Edmé Babel, a goldsmith and designer of ornament. Having designed mainly cartouches, coats of arms and various types of ornament in the 1750s, he gained recognition as a designer of culs-de-lampe and fleurons, which were considered indispensable for all lavishly produced books. In particular, he produced 57 illustrations for La Fontaine’s Contes in the Fermiers Généraux edition (Paris, 1762) and 38 fleurons and culs-de-lampe for Ovid’s Metamorphoses in Lemire’s and Bassan’s edition (Paris, 1767–71). His long-standing acquaintance Charles-Nicolas Cochin II entrusted him with engraving two plates for the Conquêtes de l’Empereur de la Chine (1767–73; Roux, nos 227–8), an important series of large-scale prints on which the best French engravers were being employed. Large plates are, however, rare in Choffard’s oeuvre; he devoted himself mainly to book decoration, such as fleurons for the Abbé de Saint-Non’s ...

Article

Kirk Marlow

(b New York, March 18, 1779; d Woolwich, March 18, 1847).

English painter, illustrator, writer and Soldier, active in Canada. As a young cadet at Woolwich Royal Military Academy (1793–5) he took instruction in topographical drawing from Paul Sandby. He travelled and sketched in continental Europe and established a reputation with his illustrations to picturesque travel-books of Italy and the Alpine regions of Switzerland.

In 1826 Cockburn went to Quebec City as commander of the Royal Artillery. His principal Canadian work is a guidebook to the city, entitled Quebec and its Environs: Being a Picturesque Guide to the Stranger (1831). It includes six engravings based on his drawings of the area. Published anonymously, the book was written in a somewhat anecdotal yet informative style, directing the newly arrived visitor to the most scenic viewpoints of the city and surrounding areas. It points out the panoramic vistas that would undoubtedly delight all visitors to and residents of Quebec city, which is perched on a cliff overlooking the St Lawrence River....

Article

David Leatherbarrow

(b London, 1771; d London, Dec 1843).

English architect, writer and illustrator. A brilliant draughtsman, speculative archaeologist and an avid reader of ancient myth, he was one of England’s most remarkable visionary architects. His career began in 1787, when he was apprenticed to James Wyatt. Two years later he entered the Royal Academy Schools, London, and won the Silver Medal in his first year and the Gold in the next. He then left for Italy, where he visited all the important Classical sites as well as less well-known sites in the Roman Campagna. He usually travelled with painters and architects, most often with C. H. Tatham and G. A. Wallis (1770–1847). Gandy won a special medal in an Accademia di S Luca competition in 1795 but was forced to return to London in 1797 because of the advance of Napoleon’s army into Italy and the bankruptcy of his financial supporter John Martindale.

Gandy was unable to set up an architectural practice when he returned to England owing to financial difficulties and worked for ...

Article

David Cast

(b Florence, Dec 9, 1691; d Florence, Jan 21, 1757).

Italian theologian and writer. He was prior of S Giovanni in Florence, where he also taught history at the university and founded the Accademia Columbaria (1735). He wrote books on theology and translated Greek writers but is remembered chiefly for his studies of Etruscan antiquities and inscriptions. These remain of value and, together with the work of Bernard de Montfaucon and the Comte de Caylus, made important contributions to the 18th-century re-evaluation of Etruscan history (see Etruscan §VIII). He was also a leading student of gems, his publication on the collection of Anton Maria Zanetti (i) being especially well known to other scholars of the period.

Museum Florentinum, exhibens insigniora vetustatis monumenta quae Florentiae sunt, 6 vols (Florence, 1731–66)Museum Etruscum exhibens insignia veterum Etruscorum monumenta, 3 vols (Florence, 1737–43)‘Gemmae antiquae A. M. Zanetti … notis Latinis’, Dactyliotheca zanettiana (Venice, 1750) P. Berghaus, ed.: ...

Article

Blanca García Vega

(b Valencia, 1757; d Madrid, after 1807).

Spanish illustrator, printmaker and painter. He was nominated Miembro de Mérito of the Real Academia de S Fernando, Madrid, in 1781. He made reproductive engravings of paintings and illustrated such books as Juan Antonio Pellicer’s (1738–1806) annotated edition of Don Quixote (1797), the Fábulas morales (1781–4) by Félix María de Samaniego (1745–1801) and the 1803 edition of the short stories Novelas ejemplares by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (1547–1616). In his depiction (1790) of the fire in the Plaza Mayor in Madrid and in his interiors of prisons and barracks he pioneered the use of aquatint. He produced the series Caprichos y bombachadas and illustrated the title-page of Ideas y caprichos pintorescos (Madrid, 1807). He had two sons: Laureano (1802–58), an engraver, and Vicente (1796–1857), a history painter.

M. Ossorio y Bernard: Galería biográfica de artistas españoles del siglo XIX...

Article

Rosamond Allwood

(fl c. 1790–c. 1839).

English furniture designer. In the mid-1830s he described himself as ‘an upholsterer of fourty five years experience’. He produced a series of pattern books containing designs for furniture and upholstery that was widely used by commercial cabinetmakers. The Modern Style of Cabinet Work Exemplified (1829) was reprinted in an improved version in 1835 and was still in demand in the trade as late as 1862, when it was reissued unaltered. King claimed that ‘as far as possible the English style is carefully blended with Parisian taste’ in the 227 designs, but he also included Grecian and Gothic furniture. King’s interpretation of the prevailing French taste is a typically confused mixture of bold Baroque scrolls and lighter Rococo curves. His Designs for Carving and Gilding (1830) contains both Greek and Rococo Revival designs, as does Modern Designs for Household Furniture (n.d.). In 1833 King published a book of full-size designs for makers of cabinets, chairs and sofas, turners and carvers entitled ...

Article

N. A. Yevsina

(Aleksandrovich)

(b Nikol’skoye-Cherenchitsy estate, nr Torzhok, 1751; d Moscow, 2/Jan 3, 1804).

Russian architect, theorist, illustrator, poet, Musician and inventor. An enlightened dilettante and encyclopedist from a princely family, he studied architecture on his own and travelled in western Europe (1775, 1776–7), above all in France and Italy. On his return to Russia L’vov worked at the Foreign Ministry and acquired a reputation as an architect from the early 1780s. His earliest works—the Neva Gate (1780–87) of the Peter and Paul Fortress in St Petersburg, the single-domed cathedral of St Joseph (1780–98) in Mogilyov and the similar five-domed church (1785–96) at the monastery of SS Boris and Gleb in Torzhok—are characterized by their austere simplicity, spareness of form and pronounced monumentality. They became the model for many Russian Neo-classical churches of the late 18th century and the early 19th. L’vov’s works for St Petersburg include the Post Office (1782–9), unexecuted designs for the Cabinet on the Nevsky Prospect (...

Article

Roger White

(b Twickenham, bapt Sept 14, 1696; d London, March 3, 1751).

English architect and writer. The son of a gardener, he first tried his hand as a landscape gardener in Twickenham and published several books that reveal his practical knowledge of the subject, notably New Principles of Gardening (1728) and Pomona (1729). He deplored the rigid formality of continental horticulture and followed Stephen Switzer in advocating the introduction of the serpentine line into layout and planting. By 1731 he had moved to London, where at different times he ran a drawing school in Soho, manufactured artificial stone ornaments, engaged in polemical journalism and produced a succession of architectural publications.

Langley’s classical pattern books plagiarized an astonishing variety of sources, both Baroque and Palladian, although it is clear from their tone and that of his newspaper articles that he had little sympathy for the prevailing Palladian orthodoxy of Richard Boyle, 3rd Earl of Burlington, and his followers. This may explain why, despite energetic self-publicity, he never managed to establish himself as a practising architect—his unsuccessful design (...

Article

(b Rouen, Nov 11, 1738; d Paris, May 7, 1826).

French painter, illustrator and writer. He began his studies in Rouen and, at 17, won first prize for drawing at the city’s Académie. Shortly afterwards he travelled to Paris, entering the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture as a student of Jean-Baptiste-Marie Pierre. In 1767–8 he was in Rome, a fact confirmed by a number of dated and inscribed drawings and paintings, including the pen, ink and wash drawing Landscape Inspired by the Gardens of the Villa d’Este at Tivoli (Paris, Ecole N. Sup. B.-A.). He was in Switzerland in 1776, where he spent several years drawing illustrations for Beát Zurlauben’s Tableau de la Suisse ou voyage pittoresque fait dans les treize cantons du Corps Helvétique (Paris, 1780–86). In 1780, having returned to France, he was approved (agréé) by the Académie Royale and received (reçu) in 1785 with Jupiter Asleep on Mount Ida (Paris, Ecole N. Sup. B.-A.). Thereafter he regularly exhibited moralistic pictures at the Salon until ...

Article

Howard Caygill

(b Oberramstadt, nr Darmstadt, July 1, 1742; d Göttingen, Feb 24, 1799).

German writer and physicist. He studied mathematics, physics and astronomy at the University of Göttingen between 1763 and 1767. During this time he kept his famous ‘scribble books’, in which he jotted the thoughts on various subjects that were edited and published posthumously as his Aphorisms. In 1770 he made his first short visit to England and returned for a longer stay in 1774–5. From his experiences there he wrote Briefe aus England (published in Deutsches Museum, 1776, nos 6, 11; 1778, nos 1, 5), an exercise in the description of English manners that he later exploited in Ausführliche Erklärungen der Hogarth’schen Kupferstiche, first published in Göttingen Taschenkalender (1784–96), a publication he edited from 1777 until his death. In the early issues he commissioned engravings from Daniel Chodowiecki, to which he added commentaries; later he turned his attention to Hogarth. At the same time Lichtenberg pursued a successful career as Professor of Physics at the University of Göttingen....

Article

Howard Caygill

(b Berlin, March 18, 1733; d Berlin, Jan 8, 1811).

German writer and publisher. As an apprentice bookseller in Frankfurt an der Oder in the late 1740s, he attended Alexander Gottlieb Baumgarten’s lectures on aesthetics. His first and only important critical work, Briefe über den jetzigen Zustand der schönen Wissenschaften in Deutschland (Berlin, 1755), earned him the friendship of Gotthold Ephraim Lessing and Moses Mendelssohn for its irenic posture in the controversy over aesthetics between Joachim Christoph Gottsched and the Zurich School. However, Nicolai is significant less for his own writings than for publishing some of the most influential critical journals of the German Enlightenment. The Bibliothek der schönen Wissenschaften und freien Künste (1757–62), Briefe, die neueste Literatur betreffdend (1759–65) and Allgemeine deutsche Bibliothek (1765–1806) printed the aesthetic and critical writings of Lessing and Mendelssohn, among other leading philosophers and critics. Nicolai’s own chief contributions to art history are his pioneering texts on art and artists in Berlin. The ...

Article

John Ford

(b London, 1769; d London, May 29, 1843).

English painter, illustrator and writer. He trained at the drawing academy of Henry Pars (c. 1733–1806) in London and first exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1790. His drawings were almost always pen, ink and colour wash (e.g. Gossip at the Cottage Door, 1794; London, BM). His most characteristic works are the illustrations for the books Microcosm (1803–8) and The Costume of Great Britain (1808) in which he successfully placed groups of well-observed characters in picturesque settings. Pyne had been a founder of the Old Water-Colour Society in 1804 but resigned in 1809 when it refused to increase its membership to greater than 24 artists. He was also an early member of the sketching society, known as the ‘Bread and Cheese Society’, founded in 1808.

Pyne wrote the text of the first two volumes of The Microcosm of London (1808), published by ...

Article

Geoffrey Ashton

(b Guildford, March 29, 1745; d Hull, April 20, 1806).

English pastellist, painter, writer and astronomer. His father, also called John Russell (1711–1804), was a bookseller, printseller and amateur artist. Russell was educated at Guildford grammar school and won premiums from the Society of Artists for drawings in 1759 and 1760. He was apprenticed to Francis Cotes and set up his own practice in 1767. In 1770 he entered the Royal Academy Schools, London, winning the silver medal for figure drawing. He exhibited at the Society of Artists in 1768 and annually at the Royal Academy from 1769 to 1806. He was elected ARA in 1772 and RA in 1788, when he became Crayon Painter to King George III and to George, Prince of Wales. He painted some rather stilted portraits in oil, but most of his work—hundreds of portraits and large numbers of fancy pictures of children with animals—is in pastel. His pastel portraits include Dr Robert Willis...

Article

(b Naples, June 23, 1668; d Naples, Jan 20, 1744).

Italian philosopher, jurist and social theorist. He was the son of a bookseller and educated in Jesuit schools and at the University of Naples. He served as a tutor for nine years to the sons of the Rocca family at Vatolla but otherwise never left Naples. In 1699 he won a competition for the Chair of Rhetoric at Naples University and held this post until his retirement in 1741, but he was compelled to supplement his salary of 100 scudi a year by private tutoring. In 1735 he was appointed historiographer to the new Bourbon king Charles VII (later Charles III of Spain).

Vico’s greatest work is his Scienza nuova (1725), in which he tried to establish a consistent pattern in the origin and development of human institutions. A subsidiary theme that emerged from his speculations was a cyclical theory of history, in which all nations are regarded collectively as diverse aspects of a single unity. According to Vico the history of man constantly moves through three stages, the divine, the heroic and the human. Examples of the divine age are Eden and ancient Egypt, where religion arose, inspired by terror of the unknown, and family life was organized. The heroic age is an aristocratic period, with wars and duels; the human age produces cities, laws and civil obedience. Patrician tyranny provokes the masses to revolt; democratic equality is then established under a republic, the excesses of which give rise to an empire. This in its turn becomes corrupt and declines into barbarism. After a ...

Article

Andrew G. Watson

(b Coventry, March 21, 1672; d London, July 6, 1726).

English palaeographer and librarian. He was one of the greatest palaeographers that Britain has produced, who even as a child enjoyed transcribing manuscripts. He went to Oxford University in 1695 as a protégé of the Bishop of Lichfield and, without taking a degree, became an assistant in the Bodleian Library in 1696. Here he contributed to one of the most ambitious scholarly projects of the time: the Catalogus manuscriptorum Angliae et Hiberniae (1697). From 1699 to c. 1705 he searched out and described Anglo-Saxon manuscripts for the second volume of George Hickes’s Linguarum veterum septentrionalium, thesaurus (1705), compiling a catalogue that was not superseded until the 1950s. Wanley’s lasting fame is due to his work as the devoted and trusted librarian to Robert and Edward Harley, Earls of Oxford, whose collections of manuscripts are now in the British Library, London. He acquired for them such landmarks of art and scholarship as the ...