Auction 149, Lot 634

"[Lot of 3] The Approach of the Emperor of China to His Tent in Tartary, to Receive the British Embassador [and] A View of Poo-Ta-La or Great Temple... [and] Plan, Section and Elevation of the Poo-Ta-La, or Temple of the Lama...", Barrow, John (Sir)

Subject: China - Views and Costumes

Period: 1796 (dated)

Publication: An Authentic Account of an Embassy from the King … to the Emperor of China

Color: Black & White

Size:
See Description

This lot of evocative engravings appeared in the account of George Macartney's travels to China, published by George Nicol. Macartney was Britain's first envoy to China, and was tasked with convincing Emperor Qianlong to ease restrictions on trade between Great Britain and China by allowing the British to have a permanent embassy in the country.

A. The Approach of the Emperor of China to His Tent in Tartary, to Receive the British Embassador, (17.8 x 12.4"). In this engraving, Emperor Qianlong heads toward a dome-shaped tent with a throne inside to meet with Macartney and his entourage, seen at right. The emperor is seated in a sedan chair hoisted by a squadron of porters while a crowd looks on. Drawn by William Alexander and engraved by James Fittler. Condition: There is moderate scattered foxing, mostly concentrated in the upper portion of the image. (B+)

B. A View of Poo-Ta-La or Great Temple Near Zhe-Hol in Tartary, (14.0 x 10.3"). The Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet, is pictured in this engraving. The former main residence of the Dalai Lama, the temple is seen here from a vantage that captures the majesty of the mountainous countryside. Drawn by William Alexander, using a sketch by Henry William Parish as the source. Engraved by Benjamin Thomas Pouncy. Condition: (A)

C. Plan, Section and Elevation of the Poo-Ta-La, or Temple of the Lama at Zhe-Hol in Tartary, (11.2 x 14.2"). This is another look at Potala Palace with emphasis on the layout and architecture of the temple. Drawn by Henry William Parish and engraved by Joseph Baker. Condition: There is a small amount of printer's ink residue and a few faint spots within the image. There is some soiling along the top and right edges of the sheet, well away from image. (B+)

References: Shirley (BL Atlases) G.BARR-1a.

Condition:

All printed on sturdy sheets with "J. Whatman" watermark and generous margins. See description above for additional details.

Estimate: $450 - $550

Sold for: $500

Closed on 5/21/2014

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