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William Hamilton RA (1751 - 1801)
Peltro William Tomkins (1760 - 1840), engraver
J. F. Tomkins, publisher

Print from the Transparent Painting exhibited .. in Front of the Bank in celebration of His Majesty's complete Recovery & Public Visit to St. Pauls Cathedral

Coloured engraving

Museum number: P112

Curatorial note

This engraving is of the transparency (a painting on transparent paper behind which lamps could be placed to illuminate it) used directly above the main entrance to the Bank of England on Threadneedle Street on the occasion of King George III's visit to St.Paul's Cathedral on 24 April 1789 to give thanks for his recovery from madness. It can be seen in position in an etching of the illumination of the entire façade of which a copy is also in Soane's collection, see P266.

The subject, set within an arched frame, is an allegorical scene showing Britannia in a carriage driven by Hygiaea, with putti representing Peace and Plenty flying in to leave gifts in her lap. She is accompanied by a female figure personifying the City of London with Sword of State and Charter, and the British lion. Two boys representing Commerce and Liberality head the procession.

Soane also owned a sketch design by Robert Smirke for a transparency proposed for the same occasion see P361.


If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: worksofart@soane.org.uk