The City of Glasgow
London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1824. Hand-coloured aquatint, 'drawn on the spot by I. Clark'. Image size (including text): 14 3/4 x 21 1/2 inches. Sheet size: 18 3/4 x 24 3/4 inches.
An historically important topographical view of Glasgow in Scotland, from John Clark's 'Views in Scotland'.
There is some debate as to who executed this stunning print. There is no reference which identifies the author of this view, but there is some indication that it is the work of the celebrated painter John Heaviside Clark (1770-1863). Born in Scotland, Clark exhibited regularly at the Royal Academy between 1801 and 1832. He was primarily a landscape and marine painter, but he also produced a number of fine aquatints, which exhibit his exceptional talents as an engraver. Known as "Waterloo Clark" for his early sketches of the battle of Waterloo, he was a painter of some repute across the British Isles, and his beautiful views remain some of the most attractive images of the English countryside. A contemporary gazetteer notes that the city was 'the manufacturing and commercial metropolis of Scotland, and the third city of the United Kingdom in point of population, and perhaps of wealth also.' (Fullarton [publisher's] A Gazetteer of the World 1856, III, p.615). According to the same source the population in 1821 was 147,043, the present view taken at about that time shows a city that is increasingly industrialised: factory chimneys are beginning to cast a pall of smoke over the city, but it has not yet come to completely overrun the landscape in which it is set. The population was to more than double in the next 20 years with the census of 1851 recording a population of 346,984.
Cf. Abbey Scenery 489; cf. Prideaux p.331; Benezit, Dictionnaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs et Graveurs, vol 3, p. 676.