Important acquisitions

Members of the Peace Society: City of Edinburgh Branch

Author Paton, J. Noel, 1821-1901
Title Members of the Peace Society: City of Edinburgh Branch
Imprint Edinburgh: A Ritchie
Date of Publication 1861
Language English
Notes Print lithographed in sanguine, depicting a group of the 1st City of Edinburgh Artillery Volunteers on duty at Edinburgh castle. The tone of the print is decidedly humorous; rather than being alert at their posts one volunteer smokes a cigar whilst admiring with two others the view across the city to Calton Hill, another is reading The Times, and a stereotypical Highlander is spinning a yarn to two his companions as a little girl listens with rapt attention. The print reveals that Paton himself had formerly served as a captain in the artillery volunteers at a time when voluntary service in the armed forces was in vogue, hence the patriotic motto on the cannon in the foreground and the caption at the top of the print. Whether the characters in the print are based on former comrades is open to question. Coincidentally the year of this print, 1861, saw the establishment of that famous Edinburgh ritual, the firing of the one o' clock gun. Paton was born in Dunfermline but trained at the Royal Academy in London and became a popular artist, very much in the accepted Victorian style, for his rendering of scenes from literature and history and also for his fairy paintings.
Shelfmark S.Sh.S.1.204.11
Reference Sources Scheck "Directory of Lithographic Printers" p. 97
Acquired on 27/05/04
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