Cabinets of Curiosities were encyclopaedias of physical information that were particularly popular in the 17th and 18th centuries; the cabinet was usually a room and the curiosities the culmination of individual research. Collections for the sake of collecting, they reflected the collector’s interests and recorded items yet without category at a time when myth was touching upon reality and science testing the limits of belief. In England perhaps the most famous example of such a cabinet is the collection of Sir Hans Sloane, the foundation of the British Museum.
This page represents only a small part of our vast collection of original Antique prints. Please click on an image to see it in high-resolution, with details of the work itself. If you have a special request or are looking for something out of the ordinary, please do contact us.
View of an equestrian performance at Astley’s Amphitheatre:. Former cavalryman Philip Astley is considered the father of the modern circus with his invention of the circus ring at his riding school in 1768.
King Outina of the Timucua consulting his magician prior to battle. Based on the 1591 engraving after Jacques le Moyne de Morgues, artist on René de Laudonnière’s 1564 expedition.
SOLD. Communications: Conqueror of Space and Time. World’s Fair with man symbolised by a transparent head. After the industrial designer Donald Deskey.
SOLDThe illusionistic circular battle panorama of Trafalgar, now lost, was invented by Henry Barker. The viewer stepped up into the centre illuminated by daylight to be given the sense of being in the midst of battle.
Thylacine (Tasmanian Tiger). Thylacinus cynocephalus. A pair captured near Launceston and drawn from life at the Zoological Society’s Vivarium. Extinct in the wild by 1930, the last captive died in 1936.
Common Marmoset with snail and pink dog rose. Owned by the mid-wife Sidney Cannon who delivered George III and was renowned as an avid collector of curiosities; much of her collection was bought by Horace Walpole.
SOLD. Flags of Nations to include flags of pirates, the Barbary Rovers and Bloody Sallee, and companies, the short lived Brandenburg West India and formidable British East India.
Mount Tarawera: Spectacular depiction from Waitangi at Lake Tarawera of the catastrophic eruption in 1886.
SOLD The amateur palaeontologist and fossil shop owner Mary Anning discovered the Iichthyosaurus, the first complete fossil found in England, in 1812.
Hindu Zodiac:: The outer ring consists of the twelve signs of the zodiac. with constellations of different names but comparable to those of Western traditions (Pisces, Aries, Scorpio, etc.). The inner ring of the zodiac represents the Sun, the five naked-eye planets, and the Moon and its ascending and descending nodes. Each of the celestial bodies is associated with a Hindu deity. 1. The Sun (Shiva). 2. The Moon (Uma). 3. Mars (Skanda, the son of Shiva). 4. Mercury (Vishnu). 5. Jupiter (Brahman). 6. Venus (Indra). 7. Saturn (Yama). 8. Dragon’s head (ascending node). 9. Dragon’s tail (descending node). The celestial bodies orbit around Mt. Meru, the mythological five-peaked mountain at the centre of the physical and spiritual universe in Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist cosmology.
Skeleton and fourth order of muscles by Jan Wandelaar: Posterior view with Clara, the Indian Rhinoceros.
Skeleton and fourth order of muscles by Jan Wandelaar: Anterior view with Clara, the Indian Rhinoceros.
The Moskstraumen or Maelstom, a system of fast moving whirpools in the Lofoten archipelago Norway, first mentioned by the ancient Greek historian Pytheas (4th century BC).
Aztec Calendar: The Serpent, symbol of the calendar, surrounds the 4 year-bearers (Tochtli, Cagli, Tecpatl and Acatl), the moon phases and the symbols for the 18 month year and 52 year century.
SOLD American Revolution: Toppling the statue of George III on the Bowling Green, New York city’s oldest park on Broadway. The statue of George III in Roman garb by the sculptor Joseph Wilton was pulled down by Capt. Oliver Brown and 40 sailors and soldiers in 1776 to be turned into musket balls.
Shooting Flying: The first mention of shooting flying birds rather than perched birds is by Blome. The new fashion probably began with the return of Charles II from exile.