Lear discovered the mountainside village of La Piana on 10 May and the grandeur of the scenery altered his opinion of the Corsican countryside: 'at a sharp turn in the road, a vast and striking picture of mountain, cliff, sea, and the village of La Piana, starts suddenly, as it were, into life: never again shall I say, as I have said more than once, that there is no remarkable coast scenery in Corsica, for, doubtless, this may claim comparison with that of most countries for grandeur' (Lear, op. cit., p. 128). The following day he travelled through the mountains down to Porto noting that 'at every turn there are new and fine combinations of beauty - round-headed pines rising above the dense vegetation that clothes the whole of the middle distance, backed by immense mountains above, and with the deep green gulf lying like a mirror below' (Lear, op. cit., p. 113).
Lear found the preparation of reproductions for his Corsican journal a highly difficult and trying process. He cut wood engravings from the drawings that he had executed on his trip, of which the present drawings are probably examples.
For two other drawings executed on Lear's trip to Corsica see lot 54.
We are grateful to Vivien Noakes for her help in preparing this catalogue entry.