Original Stipple Engraving Wheatley "Two Bunches a Penny" Cries of London 1790s
The "Cries of London" was a recurring theme in English printmaking for over three centuries. These colorful prints form a visual record of London's "lower orders", the peddlers, charlatans, street hawkers, milkmaids, and grocers who made their living on the city streets. They give the viewer a glimpse of a long forgotten London where tradesmen would advertise their wares with a musical shout or a melodic rhyme.
One of the most famous series of "London Cries" is the group of pretty pictures executed by Francis Wheatley. Wheatley's series was immensely popular and enjoyed a long period of success in the English print shops. Between 1792 and 1795 Wheatley exhibited 14 paintings of the "Cries" at the Royal Academy. The pictures attracted a great deal of attention at the exhibition and Colnaghi & Co. quickly agreed to publish a series of engravings after Wheatley's famous series
The prints, which were executed in stipple, were engraved by some the most noted engravers in England; artists such as Luigi Schiavonetti, Giovanni Vendramini and Thomas Gaugain all contributed their work to the series. Complete collections of the "Cries" remained immensely popular, and by 1910 they were fetching more than James Audubon's folio "Birds of America" at auction.
Offered for sale is this beautiful framed stipple engraving after Francis Wheatley, from the series "The Cries of London". This is one of six such engravings I have for sale. Please visit my store to see the other listings.
The image measures 13 3/4 inches tall by 11 inches wide (excluding caption). The plate mark (only visible on some of the plates) is approximately 16 by 13 inches. The frame measures 19 1/4 inches wide by 23 3/4 inches tall.
This engraving shows "Two Bunches a Penny Primroses". It is signed in the plate "F. Wheatley R.A." and "Engraved by L. Schiavonetti". It is undated.
Condition: The print is in very good condition, apart from some slight staining in the lower margin. Please view the detail photographs. The modern wood and gold frame is in very good condition, with a few minor scuffs.