WOOLLETT, William (1735-1785)
A View of Coombank near Sevenoak in Kent, the Seat of the Honble. Lieutt. Genl. Campbell / Veüe de Coombank, dans la Comté de Kent. Maison de L'honble. Lieutt. Genl. Campbell
[Pl. 29] London: Printed for John Bowles & Son, at the Black Horse in Cornhill, T. Bowles in St. Pauls Church Yard, Robt. Sayer at the Golden Buck in Fleet Street. J. Boydell, circa 1760. Engraving, printed on fine laid paper. Very good condition. Sheet size: 17 x 23 3/8 inches. Plate mark: 14 1/2 x 21 1/8 inches.
A fine image of the verdant country estate of General Campbell, Baron Sundridge of Coombank.
Born in Maidstone in 1735, William Woollett was one of the most renowned landscape engravers of his time and the first English engraver to achieve popular success in continental Europe. His artistic aptitude became apparent at an early age, and he was sent to London to train at St. Martin's Lane Academy and apprentice with the engraver and printseller John Tinney. Woollett began his career with a series of topographical views, but first truly distinguished himself as skilled engraver with the publication of his print of Richard Wilson's Destruction of the Children of Niobe . His copious plates after artists such as Stubbs, Vernet, and Claude proved so popular, that many of them were copied by engravers on the Continent. Beginning in 1766, he became an active member of the Society of Artists, where he served in a variety of positions. Although he specialized in landscapes, Woollett also engraved a number of marine and historical scenes including the print for which he is most famous, Death of General Wolfe after Benjamin West, and for which he was received the honorable title of Historical Engraver to His Majesty.
Combe Bank was built for General Campbell by Roger Morris. Campbell later gave the house to his son, who had it re-modelled by Robert Adam.
Cf. Dictionary of National Biography.