THE SOUTH PROSPECT OF THE CITY OF COVENTRY, IN WARWICKSHIRE Buck, Samuel and Nathaniel

$ 5,525.00

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 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. In Samuel and Nathaniel Bucks copperplate engraving of the city of Coventry in 1731, we find a prosperous, well set out and well appointed city, surrounded by hills, woodlands and lush green fields. Churches, hospitals, ancient city gates, and prominent civil properties can all be seen. Coventry is a city located right in the very heart of England. It was founded around a Saxon nunnery around the year 700. Many years later, the pope in Rome authorized a monastery to be founded in 1102, in the name of St.Mary, this in turn became a priory, and eventually a cathedral. Due to its close proximity to two very important old Roman roads; The Fosse Way, and Watling Street, Coventry has always been a city ideally situated to trade. In medieval times Coventry became very wealthy on the back of the wool, cloth and textile trades. In fact, by the fourteenth century, Coventry had become the fourth largest city in England  behind only Norwich, Bristol and London.This is a rare and significant opportunity to acquire one of these much sort after panoramas by Englands premier topographical engravers, and is entirely in keeping with Arader Galleries fine and long standing tradition of only offering items of the highest quality. Description prepared for Arader Galleries by Ian Williams.