To the King's most excellent Majesty, This plate, The Death of General Wolfe,is with His gracious Permission humbly dedicated by his Majesty's most dutiful Subject, William Woollett. From the original Picture in the Collection of the Right honourable Lord Grosvenor.
Published as the Act directs January 1.st 1776. by Mess.rs Woollett, Boydell & Ryland, London.
Engraving, sheet 470 x 605mm (18½ x 23¾"). Trimmed inside platemark.
Large engraving of Benjamin West's most celebrated painting, 'The Death of General Wolfe', 1770 (Ottawa, National Gallery of Canada), which represents the death of the British General James Wolfe at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham outside Quebec in 1759 during the Seven Years' War. Despite Wolfe's death, the result of the battle was a decisive British victory. West took considerable licence with his rendering- where he shows a crowd of men surrounding the dying commander, in fact only Lieutenant Henry Browne (who holds the flag here) was present at Wolfe's death. On the far left a messenger approaches to announce the British victory over the French led by the Marquis de Montcalm. Two figures on the left draw attention to him, enabling Wolfe to know that his death aided in a British victory. On the right is the St Lawrence River, and a steeple just visible through the smoke on the left is the cathedral of Quebec. A tattooed Native American on the left would have been an exciting novelty for the painting's British audience.
Fagan XCIII ix/x.
[Ref: 38677] £780.00