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Arethusa Brisbane - Rare 1824 Album, Journal of Watercolours, Prints and Poetry

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A rare and vastly interesting survival, this original early 19th Century album belonged to Arethusa Brisbane, the second daughter of Sir Charles Brisbane (1769-1829), an officer of the Royal Navy, who served during the American War of Independence, and with distinction under Lord Nelson. The album begins with an inscription by Arethusa, dated August 2nd 1824, and the latest dated entry is 1845. Covering twenty one years of her life, the book is an incredible historical insight into the life and society of the period.

The volume contains a wide variety of 19th century watercolours, 18th and 19th century etchings and engravings, and various writings and poetry. Several items belonging to Sir Charles Brisbane are included, as well as some loose ephemera, including an envelope with black wax seal, and a notarised baptism certificate. Several pages are dedicated to the seasons, as well as different nationalities, and the album contains numerous cut out and pasted engravings of country houses, and hand coloured botanical prints. The places depicted include England, Wales, Scotland and Italy.

In handsome full leather bindings, 8vo, with tooled gilt decoration, arabesque motifs and palmette corners. Four raised bands to spine, and gilt edging to pages. Marbled endpapers.

Signed and dated and inscribed.


In very good condition overall, for a bound volume of this age. The boards and spine have some wear at the edges and corners, and some surface marks and scrapes, but are well-secured and attached. The bindings are tight. The pages have some undulation, possibly from historic damp.


15 x 11.4cm (5.9" x 4.5")
Sheet: 23.4 x 38.8cm (9.2" x 15.3")

More Information
Code pr127
Artist Arethusa Brisbane
Date 1824
Dimensions 15 x 11.4cm
Medium Album
Style Realism
Subject Architecture & Cityscapes
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