[Cover title:] Ten Mezzo-tinto Engravings, from original Drawings, dedicated by Permission to Her Majesty Adelaide the Queen Dowager by Her Majesty’s dutiful, grateful & affectionate Servant … Engraved by Louis Marvy.

[London, 1848?]

Oblong folio, 10 platres (30 x 43,5 cm), loose as issued, with one landscape print each (image sizes vary between 75 x 135 mm and 90 x 200 mm); 2 plates with light spotting, but generally in very good condition, in the original grey printed wrappers with a mezzotint landscape view (small marginal tears, skillfully repaired).


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First and only edition, very rare, of this series of fine landscape prints, produced by the French etcher Louis Marvy (1815-1850) after drawings by Carolina Courtenay Boyle (1803-1883), a maid of honour to Adelaide the Queen Dowager. 'Rather than mezzotints, the prints were made using a variety of techniques (etching, soft-ground etching, rocker, aquatint)', (BM catalogue online).

After the death of her husband King William IV, Adelaide travelled in Europe, first to her native Saxony and then further south in search of a warmer climate for her health; Courtenay Boyle accompanied her and her sketches of the scenes through which they passed are reproduced here. In eight of the prints, two female figures can be seen travelling side by side.

Carolina Courtenay Boyle (1803-1883) was a gifted draughtswoman, and unusual in appearance and sentiment, with ‘golden grey hair, brushed back and cut short like a boy’s. Miss Boyle’s dress was a large Marie Antoinette hat and feather and a scarlet cloak, at that time considered most extraordinary, and excited great sensation’ (Augustus J. C. Hare, The Story of my Life, 1896.

The etcher Louis Marvy had moved from Paris to London in 1848 to escape the political upheaval in his native France. He collaborated with Thackeray on several works on English landscape painting.

Not in COPAC or OCLC. We have been able to trace only two other sets, one at the British Museum print room; and one at the Bibliotheque nationale, nine prints only, without wrappers.

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