York Castle Clifford’s Tower antique print. Antique copper-plate engraving of Clifford’s Tower, York Castle, England, a fortified complex comprising, over the last nine centuries, a sequence of castles, prisons, law courts and other buildings on the south side of the River Foss. The now-ruinous keep of the medieval Norman castle is commonly referred to as Clifford’s Tower. Built originally on the orders of William I to dominate the former Viking city, the castle suffered a tumultuous early history before developing into a major fortification with extensive water defences. After a major explosion in 1684 rendered the remaining military defences uninhabitable, the Castle continued to be used as a jail and prison until 1929.
The notorious highwayman Dick Turpin was held in York Castle after his capture for ‘horse theft’ in 1739.
This original print is from: ‘The Antiquities of England and Wales’ by Francis Grose. Eight volumes published from 1772. Printed in London for Hooper and Wigstead. Artists and engravers names are recorded below each antique print, together with the date of the engravings execution. Francis Grose’s interest was in the field of medieval remains, which were beginning to exercise an increasing grip on the public imagination. In 1772, he published the first part of ‘The Antiquities of England and Wales,’ a work which he unashamedly aimed at the popular market. Essentially, it targeted those who wanted to know about antiquities but had neither time nor means to visit them in person, and contained small panoramas of medieval ruins, together with an informative text on a separate page. Sometimes the text was taken from books already published, or from information supplied by other antiquaries (both acknowledged); sometimes Grose collated material himself from which he could work up an article. From 1772 onwards, he also toured the country to visit and draw sites for inclusion in The Antiquities. In all, Eight Volumes of the work were published. Thank you to Wikipedia for supplying links and some of the above text.
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