London: Jennings and Chaplin, 1832. Sir William Gell (1777 – 1836) was an English classical archaeologist and illustrator. He published topographical illustrations of Troy and the surrounding area in 1804. He also published illustrations showing the results of archaeological digs at Pompeii. His numerous drawings of classical ruins and localities, executed with great detail and exactness, are preserved in the British Museum. Gell was a thorough dilettante, fond of society and possessed of little real scholarship. Nonetheless his topographical works became recognized text-books at a time when Greece and even Italy were but superficially known to English travelers. His best-known work is Pompeiana; the Topography, Edifices and Ornaments of Pompeii, published between 1817 and 1832, in the first part of which he was assisted by J. P. Gandy. Although his works have been superseded by later publications, they continue to provide valuable information for the study of classical topography. He is, together with his friends Edward Dodwell and Keppel Richard Craven, by some modern scholars seen as the founder of the study of the historical topography of the hinterland of Rome.His works and notebooks proved very valuable for the topographical studies done by Thomas Ashby at the beginning of the 20th century [Wikipedia]. The two volumes are bound in three quarter brown leather with red and blue marbled paper boards. Leather is scuffed, soiled, and bumped. Faded spine with title and volume number labels. Boards also have light scuffs. Hinges are a little tender but binding and text block are tight. Interior pages are quite clean and bright with some aging to page and occasionally to plate edges. Ownership signature on ffeps. With 88 handsome plates from drawings done by Gell, of which two are hand colored. There are also thirty chapter vignettes printed on a fine white paper and mounted. Very good condition. Octavo. Volume I: 198 pages; Volume II: 207 pages. ARCH/052021.
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