November 17, 2020 Early Arms & Militaria: Age of Exploration, Empire & Revolution
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 11/17/2020
Henry William Bunbury. “[Sailors Ashore] From a Sketch taken at Portsmouth by W. H. Bunbury Esqr.” London, published June 24th 1785 by J. R Smith. Rare first state of this hand-colored, mixed method engraving, 16-5/8" x 14-1/2" (view), matted and framed. The Treaty of Paris in 1783 marked a cessation of hostilities in both America and Europe and the publication shortly thereafter of this popular Bunbury view is probably not coincidental. It shows Royal Navy sailors from the HMS “Edgar”, a guardship at Portsmouth Harbor, enjoying their liberty ashore but probably also contemplating their uncertain future employment in a reduced, peacetime Royal Navy. This view was later reissued as “Sailors Ashore” in 1802, during another short lull of peace between the French Revolutionary and subsequent Napoleonic Wars. Henry William Bunbury (1750-1811) began to draw caricatures and other comic subjects while studying at Cambridge, etching and publishing his first print of such in 1771. Although a gentleman of means and an “amateur”, Bunbury then quickly rose to become one of the greatest satirical artists of the day, his caricatures being as well-known as those of contemporaries Thomas Rowlandson and James Gillray. He was a popular character and the friend of most of the notables of his day, whom he never offended by attempting political satire; his easy circumstances and social position (he was colonel of the West Suffolk Militia and equerry to the Duke of York) allowed him leisure to practice his talents. He was a close friend of Thomas Rowlandson and John Raphael Smith, both of whom engraved many of Bunbury's works, as with this notable and early print published by the latter. CONDITION: Bright and clean, with strong original coloring; conservation-matted and framed under UV glazing. JLK

Item Dimensions: 23 x 21"
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $375.00
Final prices include buyers premium:
Estimate: $750 - $1,500
Number Bids: 6
Auction closed on Tuesday, November 17, 2020.
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