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Tuer, Andrew White, 1838-1900 / Old London street cries ; and, The cries of to-day : with heaps of quaint cuts including hand-coloured frontispiece (1885)

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The Illustrations.

Ten of the illustrations by that great master of the art of caricature, Thomas Rowlandson, are copied in facsimile from a scarce set, fifty-four in all, published in 1820, entitled "Characteristic Sketches of the Lower Orders," to which there is a powerful preface, as follows :—

"The British public must be already acquainted with numerous productions from the inimitable pencil of MR. ROWLANDSON, who has particularly distinguished himself in this department.

"There is so much truth and genuine feeling in his   [p. 118]   delineations of human character, that no one can inspect the present collection without admiring his masterly style of drawing and admitting his just claim to originality. The great variety of countenance, expression, and situation, evince an active and lively feeling, which he has so happily infused into the drawings as to divest them of that broad caricature which is too conspicuous in the works of those artists who have followed his manner. Indeed, we may venture to assert that, since the time of Hogarth, no artist has appeared in this country who could be considered his superior or even his equal."

The two illustrations—"Lavender," with a background representing Temple Bar, and "Fine Strawberries," with a view of Covent Garden—are from "Plates Representing the Itinerant Traders of London in their ordinary Costume. Printed in 1805 as a supplement to 'Modern London' (London : printed for Charles Phillips, 71, St. Paul's Churchyard)." The set is chiefly interesting as representing London scenes of the period ; many parts of which are now no longer recognisable.

The crudely drawn, but picturesquely treated "Catnach" cuts, from the celebrated Catnach press in Seven Dials, now owned by Mr. W. S. Fortey, hardly require separately indicating.

  [p. 119]  

The four oval cuts, squared by the addition of perpendicular lines, "Hot spice gingerbread !" "O' Clo !" "Knives to Grind !" and "Cabbages O ! Turnips !" are facsimiled from a little twopenny book, entitled, "The Moving Market ; or, Cries of London, for the amusement of good children," published in 1815 by J. Lumsden and Son, of Glasgow. It has a frontispiece representing a curious little four-in-hand carriage with dogs in place of horses, underneath which is printed this triplet :—

See, girls and boys who learning prize,
Round London drive to hear the cries,
Then learn your Book and ride likewise.

The quaint cuts, "Ere's yer toys for girls an' boys !" "New-laid eggs, eight a groat,—crack 'em and try 'em !" "Flowers, penny a bunch !" (frontispiece), and the three ballad singers, apparently taken from one of the earliest chap-books, are really but of yesterday. For these the writer is indebted to his friend, Mr. Joseph Crawhall, of Newcastle-on-Tyne, who uses his cutting tools direct on the wood without any copy. Mr. Crawhall's "Chap-book Chaplets," and "Olde ffrendes wyth newe Faces," quaint quartos each with many hundreds of hand-coloured cuts in his own peculiar and inimitable style, and "Izaak Walton, his Wallet Booke," are fair examples of his skill in this direction.

  [p. 120]  

Two plates unenclosed with borders—"Old Chairs to mend !" and "Buy a Live Goose ?" are from that once common and now excessively scarce child's book, The Cries of London as they are Daily Practised, published in 1804 by J. Harris, the successor of "honest John Newbery," the well-known St. Paul's Churchyard bookseller and publisher.

George Cruikshank's London Barrow-woman ("Ripe Cherries"), "Tiddy Diddy Doll," and other cuts, are from the original illustrations to Hone's delightful "Every-Day Book," recently republished by Messrs. Ward, Lock & Co.

The cuts illustrating modern cries—"Sw-e-e-p !" ; "Dust, O !" ; "Ow-oo !" ; "Fresh Cabbidge !" ; and "Stinking Fish !" are from the facile pencil of Mr. D. McEgan.

Finally, in regard to the business card of pussy's butcher, the veracious chronicler is inclined to think that an antiquarian might hesitate in pronouncing it to be quite so genuine as it looks. This opinion coincides with his own. In fact he made it himself. As a set-off however, to the confession, let it be said that this is the sole fantaisie d'occasion set down herein.

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