The only reason I have this print I suppose is because no one likes the look of a truly antique old print. Fact is they can be fully restored if you wish and this is a rare print commemorating a significant event in preventing Cruelty to Animals. Offered for sale is an 19th century, genuine print, The Trial of Bill Burn, Under the Martins Act Ackermann & Co., London: 2nd Quarter 19th C. but after August 1838 Hand-colored aquatint
22.5 x 27 inches, image 30.5 x 25 inches, overall
P. Mathews, Stourbridge (after)
Charles Hunt (engraver)
This is a significant print.
A landmark trial in the history of the prevention of animal abuse, the work is a satirical interpretation of the trial and its purpose, a bill sponsored by Richard Martin of Galway (1754-1834), making it an offense to mistreat farm animals. In the picture the donkey is in the courtroom called as a witness for the defense of its owner, Mr. William Burn, who thumbs his nose at the court. The presence of the donkey emphasizes the view that this proposed law is regarded as asinine, a view further reinforced by a copy of the lying tattered on the floor behind the donkey's hind legs.
The print is in VG condition with no tears, holes, etc. It measures in it's frame 30.5x25". The frame is a wonderful tiger striped oak and unusual in its own right. There is a fade line where the missing part of the original backboard interacted over the years. I always recommend to wait as long as possible before having a print lightened or for any restoration. It's an old print and looks like it. FEW PEOPLE REALIZE THAT PRINTS CAN BE RESTORED- They simply fix the colors and bleach the "foxing" out. There are online sites explaining this. It does not lesson the value, so it is a matter of preference. Typical of early framing is the old wood backboard used which over time caused harmful acidity and what is known as back-board stains which have bleed through. On this print you will see an example of this. These streaks can be professionally removed as explained at old prints restored, and old print restoration. If I have not included them in my favoite sites, I have them.
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