17.75 x 33.75 Inches.
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 countys 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 Bucks 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. The Sheffield we gaze upon in 1745, in Samuel and Nathaniel Bucks detailed and highly skilled copperplate panorama, is a town preparing itself to ride a wave of unrivaled prosperity during Englands Industrial Revolution. Earlier than this, sometime in the fourteenth century, Sheffield primarily became well known for its production of knives. Then some centuries later, the town was to become world famous for its production of fine cutlery. The towns wealth and fame came at a high price to those poor souls who worked within the steel industry. During the mid nineteenth century, the German Friedrich Engels, noted that worker's lives rarely exceeded that of between 35 and 45 years of age. Perhaps because of this, Sheffield, has been the centre of the Trades Union movement in England, and has always maintained a proud and longstanding association with the movement. The panorama portrays Sheffield as an elegant, well organized town, with many neat dwellings and public buildings, all intermingled amongst charming churches, and a handsome chapel, a Ladys bridge, and some lovely rolling English countryside.In the foreground gentlefolk are seen sitting, relaxing, or walking, all the while admiring their beautiful town set out below them. Sheffield was once the proud possessor of an eleventh century castle, however, in one of many battles in the town during the English Civil War, it was destroyed by Parliamentarian forces. On a lighter note, the worlds very first football team was formed in Sheffield in 1857; Sheffield Football Club This is a rare and significant opportunity to acquire one of these much sort after panoramas by Englands premier topographical engravers, and is entirely in keeping with Arader Galleries fine and long standing tradition of only offering items of the highest quality for forty years.lDescription prepared for Arader Galleries by Ian Williams.