"Asdod. March 24, 1839", Roberts, David
Subject: Ashdod, Holy Land
Period: 1843 (dated)
Publication: The Holy Land, Egypt and Nubia
Color: Black & White
13 x 8 inches
33 x 20.3 cm
This tinted stone lithographic view shows Ashdod in the background behind the Mediterranean and in the foreground numerous sheep and cattle and their herders. Today Ashdod is Israel's largest port and accounts for 60% of the country's imported goods. This is the desirable Moon edition with his imprint "F.G. Moon, 20 Threadneedle St., Jany. 2nd, 1843" below the image. The pin holes used to facilitate the alignment of two stones, carrying black and tan colors, are visible at two corners of the image. David Roberts, R.A. (1796-1864) was one of the first Europeans to depict the Middle East. Considered a dangerous and barbaric land, it was not until the Napoleonic invasion of Egypt after 1798 that any serious study had been done into the Pharoic culture by Europeans. Sir Richard Burton's infamous penetration of Mecca did not occur until 1858, twenty years after Roberts painted the wonders of the Moslem world and the Holy Land. The sketchbooks from his journeys were one of the most popular publications of its time, allowing Victorian Europeans a peek into the exotic world from the comfort of their parlors.
Two patches of old mounting tape on verso, and the lower margin is slightly trimmed. The image is fine with light, even age toning.