A View of St. James’s Palace and Westminster Abbey from the Village of Charing
- About the work
About the artist
Richard Bernard Godfrey, draughtsman and printmaker, was probably born in London. Little is known of his early life. He exhibited at the Society of Artists from 1765 to 1770. The majority of his works were book illustrations for London publishers, in particular topographical and antiquarian illustrations. His best-known works are for Francis Grose's ‘Antiquities of England and Wales’ (published 1772-87) and for the periodical ‘Antiquarian Repertory’ (published 1775-86), for which Godfrey was also the publisher and editor. He also worked for private individuals, including the author, politician, and patron of the arts Horace Walpole (1717-1797).
Wenceslaus Hollar, draughtsman and etcher, was born in Prague; the son of an official. It is thought he had no formal training. He left Prague at 20 and resided in Stuttgart (1627-29), Strasbourg (1629-30), Frankfurt-am-Main (1631) and Cologne (1632-38), where Abraham Hogenberg published his portraits and views of Prague and the Dutch coast. Thomas Howard, Second Earl of Arundel, met Hollar in Cologne and returned to London with him in 1636. He produced prints of works in the Earl’s collection and married a servant to the Earl’s wife. He moved to Antwerp in 1644, returning in 1651/52. In 1669 he was the official artist on an embassy to Tangier with Lord Henry Howard, which resulted in two series of etchings. He died in Westminster aged 70.