Purbrook House was originally built by Sir Robert Taylor (1714-1788), for Peter Taylor in 1770. It did not survive long; it was demolished in 1829 and the estate broken up. The site remained abandoned for a decade before it was purchased by John Deverell who built a new house. In 1924, it was converted into a school, which it remains today.
Thomas Malton was an architectural draughtsman and writer on perspective. He produced a series of aquatint views of buildings by Sir Robert Taylor. In 1791, Malton exhibited The hall at Purbrook in Hampshire, (no. 601) and it seems likely that the present aquatint was based on this work.
Thomas Hope (1769-1831) was a designer and collector and the interiors of his two houses, Portland Place, London and Deepdene, Surrey were regarded as seminal in the development of collecting and interior design. In 1807, he published, the acclaimed Household Furniture and Interior Decoration. This frame with its ebony black and gold motifs is characteristic of Hope's distinctive style.