c1762 S Elevation of Winstanley Lighthouse Coloured Engraving


A wonderful original c1762 hand coloured engraving, titled: ‘South Elevation of Winstanley’s Lighthouse upon the Edystone Rock, as it was finished in the year 1699.

Drawn orthographically from a perspective print thereof. Published by Himself, engraved by Hen. Roberts, 1762’. This is an incredible engraving, near impossible to find outside of a handful of museums. It shows the lighthouse on the rock, with a small rowing boat tied up alongside. The main features of the lighthouse are marked. The engraver is Henry Roberts. The engraving has been tastefully mounted, framed and glazed. Condition is very good, with just a little water damage that is not obvious.

The Henry Winstanley was the first lighthouse to be built on the notorious Eddystone reef, 14 miles off the coast of Plymouth, Devon, in the English Channel. Henry Winstanley (1644-1703), Clerk of Works to Charles II at Audley End and Newmarket, produced his first design for the lighthouse in 1696. In 1697, while superintending the construction, he was captured by a French privateer who destroyed the work. Released the same year, he went back to work and completed the lighthouse in 1699. A storm on the night of 26 November 1703 destroyed the lighthouse, killing the light-keepers, the workmen and Winstanley himself.

Roberts’s 1762 engraving is based on an earlier orthographic drawing from a perspective print. It was later republished as plate 5 of ‘A narrative of the building and a description of the construction of the Edystone lighthouse with stone, by John Smeaton’.

Size image: 34.5 x 53 cm (13 5/8 x 20 7/8 inches)
Size frame: 53.5 x 71.5 x 1.5 cm (21 x 28 1/8 x 5/8 inches)
Weight: 3030 g