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SKETCHES IN THE GROUNDS OF MARSHALLS, The Seat of Rowland Stephenson.

SKETCHES IN THE GROUNDS OF MARSHALLS, The Seat of Rowland Stephenson.

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SKETCHES IN THE GROUNDS OF MARSHALLS, The Seat of Rowland Stephenson.

by HORNER, Thomas

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Croydon, Surrey, United Kingdom
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About This Item

Oblong 8vo., album measuring 20 x 15 cm, comprising lithographed title page and trompe-d'oiel prefatory leaf (in the form of a letter to Rowland Stephenson), 11 lithographed title vignettes with two further titles to the views on the facing leaves penned in manuscript, 12 lithographed views (2 of which are coloured by hand) each set within a highly decorative blind embossed border by 'Dobbs Patent', London (14 signed as such); contemporary maroon straight-grained morocco, the panelled covers with a broad decorative gilt roll-tool border and corner-pieces, the upper the upper cover lettered 'Marshalls and the lower with a lyre, gilt edges, (a little rubbed at the extremities, 4 leaves detached from the sub mounts).


A few years after this work was completed both the recipient Rowland Stephenson, who lived at Marshall, and the artist became bankrupts and fled to America.

Funded by Stephenson, Thomas Hornor built the domed Colosseum in Regents Park to exhibit a vast 360-degree painted panoramic view of London taken from vantage point of a temporary hut placed at the top of the dome of St Paul's Cathedral. Such was the cost of building the Colosseum that Rowland Stephenson MP, having already taken hundreds of thousands of pounds of securities and cash from the family bank of Remington, Stephenson, & Coleman, had to flee his creditors and absconded to America in 1828. 'In January 1829 Hornor threw open the unfinished Colosseum to the public, who could enjoy the panorama at various levels, riding upwards in the "ascending room", the first passenger lift in England and Hornor's own design. Income was large, but costs were larger yet, and later that year Hornor also absconded to the USA.' [ODNB]

Before this terrible calamity engulfed them Horner's neat volume of Sketches in the Grounds of Marshalls was produced for his close friend Rowland Stephenson. Only one other copy, less extravagant in the number of leaves and binding, is known to exist today and held at the Yale Centre for British Art [see below]. Hornor included by way of preface a trompe d'oeil letter to the owner Stephenson in which he declares that 'Having devoted the evenings of this winter to the Lithographic process, I have found great pleasure in applying it to my sketches of Marshalls, and have prepared a few copies in the hope that to your family and friends they might prove not uninteresting memorials of your delightful house and grounds'. This is followed by various views of the house and gardens,but unlike its counterpart at Yale (DA690.R75 S64 1824) our copy has a markedly more elaborate binding, an additional embossed descriptive title facing each of the plates, and also a unique 'Fantoccine' at the end of the work.

We can find no reference to the word 'Fantoccine' and can only conclude it was the invention of Horner, a miniature optical spinoff from his work on panoramas. Set into the inside back cover is a hand coloured lithograph scene of the Stephenson family entertaining a party for friends in their drawing room. In the foreground are three children peering into the Fantoccine, through a cutaway there can be viewed a perpetual scene including in miniature a boxing match, people cowering under umbrellas, arrival at a coaching inn, guest being greeted at an entertainment, a horse and trap taking flight, groups of people attending the races, a gentleman being accidentally hit by a bakers tray of loaves, a woman hitting her husband over the head with a boot, a dog fight with spectators and other miniature scenes. The cutaway to view the Fantoccine is only 16 mm square, the miniature figures on the disc being revolved from the top of the inside back cover, the hidden disc is approximately 130 mm in diameter making the continuous Fantoccine panorama about 400 mm long.

Marshalls was once a delightfully situated Georgian mansion one mile east of Romford in Essex then set deep in the countryside and just the sort of country house that a successful banker was expected to have. The lithographic views of the house and garden are somewhat redolent of Humphry Repton's views produced for the various editions of the Peacock's Polite Repository.

It is quite possible our copy was that intended to be kept by Rowland Stephenson and was left behind at the house in his scramble to escape to America. The subsequent owner of Marshalls has pencilled his own name under the palette 'and by Ralph George Price, 1876.' Like many small estates in the outskirts of London the house and surrounding land was broken into lots and sold off for development in 1924 and in 1959 the house was demolished leaving our work as one of it's few memorials.

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Details

Seller
Pickering & Chatto, Antiquarian Booksellers GB (GB)
Seller's Inventory #
3210003
Title
SKETCHES IN THE GROUNDS OF MARSHALLS, The Seat of Rowland Stephenson.
Author
HORNER, Thomas
Book Condition
Used
Quantity Available
1
Date Published
1824
Weight
0.00 lbs
Keywords
Fantoccine
Bookseller catalogs
Fun & Games; Pot Pourri;

Terms of Sale

Pickering & Chatto, Antiquarian Booksellers

30 day return guarantee, with full refund including original shipping costs for up to 30 days after delivery if an item arrives misdescribed or damaged.

About the Seller

Pickering & Chatto, Antiquarian Booksellers

Seller rating:
This seller has earned a 5 of 5 Stars rating from Biblio customers.
Biblio member since 2021
Croydon, Surrey

About Pickering & Chatto, Antiquarian Booksellers

Pickering & Chatto has been dealing in rare books for the best part of two centuries. Since 2014 we have been based in the vestry of St. Clement's Church in the City of London, and have a stock of some 2000+ books, principally in the fields of literature, philosophy, social sciences, science and medicine, law and women's studies, from the fifteenth to the first decades of the twentieth century.Due to ongoing Covid-19 restrictions our offices are at present closed. We are, however, always happy to receive any inquiries by email.

Glossary

Some terminology that may be used in this description includes:

Gilt
The decorative application of gold or gold coloring to a portion of a book on the spine, edges of the text block, or an inlay in...
Morocco
Morocco is a style of leather book binding that is usually made with goatskin, as it is durable and easy to dye. (see also...
Leaves
Very generally, "leaves" refers to the pages of a book, as in the common phrase, "loose-leaf pages." A leaf is a single sheet...
Title Page
A page at the front of a book which may contain the title of the book, any subtitles, the authors, contributors, editors, the...
Miniature
A book that is less then 3 inches in width and ...
Edges
The collective of the top, fore and bottom edges of the text block of the book, being that part of the edges of the pages of a...
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