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. Samuel and Nathaniel Buck provide a splendid copperplate panorama of the cathedral city of Salisbury in the attractive English county of Wiltshire. Published in 1734, it shows a city of size and considerable means. By the fourteenth century, Salisbury was already the formost town in the county. Within the city itself, the Bucks highlight many important religious and civil buildings; The Bishops Palace, and Trinity College stand out, before you behold the magnificent medieval cathedral, and its enormous spire, trying to get ever closer to the heavens. Farther to the right of the cathedral, you find the ceremonial Guild Hall, the Work House, The Market House and the town Jail, perhaps mischievously, next to a church! In the near foreground, people are seen going to market perhaps, or walking with friends and acquaintances around the edges of the city. The vicinity of Salisbury is extremely ancient. Old Sarum, nearby, is considered a Neolithic settlement which over time became a hill top fort in the Iron Age. Both the Romans and the Saxons also has settlements there. The city is mentioned in the Norman Domesday book of 1086. A cathedral was built between 1075 and 1092, and some additional work was carried out in 1120. Due to tensions between the military and the clergy at Old Sarum, it was decided to re-site, and rebuild a new cathedral at New Sarum, or Salisbury as we know it today, in 1220. Salisbury cathedral houses one of only four surviving copies of King Johns famous Magna Carta, and it also has the oldest, surviving mechanical clock (1386) in Britain. 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. Description prepared for Arader Galleries by Ian Williams.