St. Paul's Cathedral, London, England
early 19th century
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A watercolour view of the Queen's Library at Frogmore House, a yellow/gold room with painted bookcases on opposite sides and windows to the left, framed by yellow and blue curtains and swags. Prepared for one of the plates in William Henry Pyne's 'History of the Royal Residences' (1816-1819). Engraved by W. J. Bennett, the print published 1.10.1817.
Pyne's 'History of the Royal Residences' was a three-volume publication which encompassed a number of royal residences, including Windsor Castle (vol. 1) and Buckingham House (vol. 2), presenting 100 hand-coloured engravings of exteriors and interiors accompanied by descriptive texts. The 100 watercolours which were engraved for the publication survive in the Royal Library; these watercolours are exactly the size of the image on the printed plates, and may perhaps have been intended as colour guides for the artists responsible for hand-painting the monochrome prints.
Catalogue entry adapted from George III & Queen Charlotte: Patronage, Collecting and Court Taste (London, 2004):
The Queen’s Library occupied the pavilion at the southern end of the house, immediately next door to the Dining Room. The open door at back right led directly through into the open door at back left of the view of the Dining Room. It was here that Queen Charlotte kept her botanical collections, her printing press and a large part of her library; these were all dispersed at auction in June 1819. Among the items included in this sale was the herbarium of the Revd John Lightfoot, which had been purchased after Lightfoot’s death in 1788 as a gift from the King to the Queen; it was housed in twenty-four mahogany cabinets at Frogmore. Some of the more personal items in the Queen’s library were retained by her family after her death. These included a number of red morocco portfolios containing drawings by the King and their children.
Alternate title: The Queen's Library, Frogmore.
Descriptive Medium: 'Watercolour and bodycolour over pencil'