leech the comic history of England
Antique Prints

Since 1763 the name 'Russborough' has been synonymous with collecting and dealing in fine art. In the closing decades of the last century the historic town of Port Hope has become home to Lord Russborough's Annex, which specialises in an individual mix of antique maps, paintings and prints.

While Lord Russborough's Annex features a great many works of museum calibre, we also offer a wonderful selection of prints priced at under $100.

An extract of our prints currently available:

Leech J. The Comic History of England

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British Paintings in oil
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"He is a Frenchman and I cannot say how far you should trust him" Henry VIII

comic hist of England

A series of illustrations by John Leech from 'The Comic History of England'

Hand coloured etchings, Some fading, Matted, glazed, framed. Each image approx 4 ¼ x 6 ¼” excluding letters. [Paper size Approx. 5 1/4 x 8 1/4"] Frame 8 3/4 x 10 3/4"

Ref. CB 1-10 /AL/ a.ande >DAL each      PRICE CODE A     Click here for price guide

The Comic History of England with text by Gilbert A. A' Beckett with 20 hand coloured etchings of which we have ten available, by John Leech was pubished in 2 Vols. by Bradbury, Agnew & Co. London. 1847/48



Henry VIIIth. meeting Francis 1st.
  (See image above)
William inspecting the volunteers previous to the Invasion of England
King John signing Magna Carta
Queen Philippa interceding with Edward III for the Burgesses of Calais
Coronation of Henry the Fourth (from the best authorities)
Embarkation of King Henry the Fifth at Southampton A.D. 1415
Marriage of Henry the Sixth and Margaret of Anjou
Edward's arm in the hands of his medical advisors
The Battle of Bosworth Field, a scene in the great drama of history
Henry the 8th. and his queen 'at a Maying'

John Leech (23 August 1817 – 29 October 1864) John Leech was born in London. His father, a native of Ireland, was the landlord of the London Coffee House on Ludgate Hill. It was from his father that Leech inherited his skill with the pencil, which he began to use at a very early age. Leech was educated at Charterhouse School, where William Makepeace Thackeray, his lifelong friend, was a fellow pupil, and at sixteen he began to study for the medical profession at St Bartholomew's Hospital, where he won praise for the accuracy and beauty of his anatomical drawings, but gradually he drifted into the artistic profession. His nickname "Blicky" stuck with him during his life, along with fame. In 1840 Leech began his prolific contributions to various magazines. Among such of his designs are four charming plates to Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol (1843),and the individual highly original and broadly humorous etchings in the Comic History of England (1847–1848). His subjects were mainly of a small vignette size, transcribed with the best skill of such engravers as Orrin Smith, and not, like the larger and later Punch illustrations, cut at speed by several engravers working at once on the subdivided block.
It was in 1841 that Leech's connection with Punch began, a connection which continued until his death, and resulted in the production of the best-known and most admirable of his designs. It would be a mistaken criticism which ranked him as a comic draughtsman, for like Hogarth, he was a true humorist, a student of human life, though he observed humanity mainly in its whimsical aspects.

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