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DESENFANS, Noel Joseph (1745--1807)
A plan, preceded by a short review of the fine arts, to preserve among us, and transmit to posterity, the portraits of the most distinguished characters of England, Scotland, and Ireland, since His Majesty's accession to the throne. Also, to give encouragement to British artists, and to enrich and adorn London with some galleries of pictures, statues, antiques, medals, and other valuable curiosities, without any expence to government. By Noel Desenfans, Esq.
London: printed by and for Sampson Low; and sold by C. Law; and E. Booker, 1799.
[4], 54 p. ; 20.2 cm. (8º)

Dedicated to the trustees of the British Museum. In 1790 Desenfans had been commissioned by Stanislaus, King of Poland to collect pictures in England for a Polish national collection; here he outlines his proposal, after the fall of Stanislaus in 1795, to offer the collection to the British government. ESTC t42435.

Copy Notes Copy 1: With an inserted letter of presentation to Soane from Desenfans, dated 15th Jany. 99. Bound (5) of five pamphlets.
Copy 2: Bought from John Britton for £1 5s. in [1823?]. (Priv. Corr. E.5.1). Interleaved, with a letter from the author to Viscount Lake pasted in opposite the title-page, 5 engraved prints, including 2 of the British Museum, pasted in, and a five-page MS. account of the subject of Sir Josh. Reynolds's picture of Samuel taken from Portraits Exemplified. Inscribed in pencil on front free-endpaper 3 Decr 1808/ W. Stewarts (Stace's (?) Books) 15/6

Binding Copy 1: C19th full diced russia, gilt double-rule borders, gilt- and blind-tooled spine, marbled edges. Bound by Edwin Hutchinson for 4s., 28 February 1832. (Archive 7/16/29 book binding, half russia). Numbered '67' in a series of pamphlet volumes.
Copy 2: C18th sprinkled calf, gilt roll-tool borders, gilt-tooled spine with urn motif, black morocco spine-label.

Reference Number 2089


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