Very ornamental over chimneys or in halls, stair-cases or entries”

By NICHOLLS, Sutton [and] NUTTING, Joseph, 1714 

A New Prospect of ye South-Side of ye City of London with the River Thames & London Bridge; [with] A New Prospect of ye North-Side of ye City of London with New Bedlam & Moore Fields .

British Isles
  • Author: NICHOLLS, Sutton [and] NUTTING, Joseph
  • Publication place: London [and] London
  • Publisher: Printed and Sold by Henry Overton at the White Horse without Newgate [and] Printed and Sold by Henry Overton at the White Horse without Newgate
  • Publication date: [c1710-16] and [c1710-16]
  • Physical description: A pair of copper engravings, each printed on three sheets, joined.
  • Dimensions: Image: 610 by 1380mm (24 by 54.25 inches). Sheet: [1] 630 by 1465mm (24.75 by 57.5 inches), [2] 696 by 1470mm (27.5 by 58 inches).
  • Inventory reference: 12500

Notes

The New Prospect of ye South-Side [sic] of ye City’ is a prospect of the City of London as seen across the river extending from the Temple to the Tower of London. The view shows the Old Play House’ (i.e. Dorset Gardens Theatre) at Whitefriars (which ceased to exist in 1705), St Paul’s Cathedral with a dome design which differs from that actually built, the tower of St Andrew Holborn without its urn pinnacles, Wren’s Custom House (burnt down in 1718), traitors’ heads spiked on London Bridge, and the Folly off Bankside. St Michael Crooked Lane lacks its spire. It does not appear to show the Tower of London’s Great Storehouse, completed 1692. The Northern Heights in the background resemble a mountain range. The dedication appears in a cartouche at the upper left, bordered with festoons and surmounted by the arms of Dr Gideon Harvey. Dr Gideon Harvey was supposedly appointed to the coveted post of Physician to the Tower of London for the same reason Sextus V was advanced to the pontificate: he was sickly, and would soon be dead. In the event Harvey lived and retained the post for over 50 years.

The title and imprint appear in a cartouche in the middle of the sky, surmounted by City regalia and with a scallop shell forming its base; it is flanked on the left by a river god holding the Royal Standard (pre-1707 design), and on the right by a river goddess holding a City banner. The city arms are at top right, lacking the helm in the crest.

The present example is the second state of an earlier panorama published by James Walker, dated by Hyde to approximately 1704.

The New Prospect of ye North-Side [sic]’ extends from St Peter Cornhill on the left to St Martin Ludgate on the right. Most of the mid-distance is occupied by a portrait of Hooke’s Bethlehem Hospital (built 1675–1676). St Michael Crooked Lane still lacks a spire. The dome of St Paul’s Cathedral is inaccurately represented, being the artist’s idea of how it would appear on completion. Staffage includes criers, beggars, a boy climbing over a fence into the grounds of Bethlehem Hospital, booksellers displaying their wares on the Hospital fence, and ladies drying sheets on the Hospital lawns.

The Dedication appears at top left in a cartouche festooned on either side and surmounted by the City arms. The central title cartouche is flanked by a river god and a river goddess each holding an oar. The city arms appear at top right lacking the helm in the crest. The prospect was listed in Henry Overton’s 1717 catalogue (where it is recommended as very ornamental over chimneys or in Halls, Stair-Cases, or Entries”), and also in the 1734 catalogue of Overton and Hoole.

The British Museum dates both prints to c1710. The South-Side’ prospect was first published c1704 by James Walker, around the time that Gideon Harvey became Physician at the Tower. The North-Side’ Prospect was also published by Walker, presumably at the same time. The prints both appear in Overton’s 1717 catalogue. 

Image gallery