7 - 8 April 2004
LYCETT, Joseph (1774-1827).Views in Australia or New South Wales, & Van Diemen's Land delineated. London: J. Souter, 1824 [-1825].
Oblong 4° (258 x 358mm). Hand-colored lithographic title, 2 engraved maps, one folding, 48 hand-coloured aquatints by Lycett after his original drawings. Dedication to Earl Bathurst, advertisement leaf, introductory account and descriptive text for each view. (One folding map partially trimmed to image upper left, the other with neatly repaired edges, occasional minor spots or browning not affecting images, a few neatly repaired marginal tears.) 20th-century black morocco gilt.
THE FINEST COLOUR-PLATE BOOK ON AUSTRALIA. Lycett, a professional painter of portraits and miniatures, was transported to New South Wales in 1814 for forgery, working as artist to Major General Macquarie, Governor of the colony. Impressed with Lycett's talents, Macquarie sent three of his drawings to Earl Bathurst, Secretary for the colonies (and the dedicatee of this work). Granted a pardon through Bathurst's influence in 1819, Lycett travelled extensively in New South Wales and Van Diemen's Land, continuing in his role of unofficial government artist. In 1821 he returned to England. Following the success of his two lithographic panoramas of Sydney and Hobart, his Views in Australia were published by Souter in 13 monthly parts between July 1824 and June 1825. Strong demand for the first part enabled aquatints to be substituted for the lithographic plates originally proposed. After completion of the parts issue, the work was published in book form without change to the imprint date. Wantrup calls Lycett 'the outstanding artist of his period in Australia ... his Views in Australia is a landmark in the development of the Australian illustrated book' (Australian Rare Books, pp.289-292). Abbey Travel 570; Tooley 310; Ferguson 974.
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