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A Memoir Of Thomas Bewick, Written By Himself. Embellished By Numerous Wood Engravings, Designed And Engraved By The Author For A Work On British Fishes, And Never Before Published.

Thomas Bewick

RA Collection: Book

Record number




Newcastle-on-Tyne:: Printed By Robert Ward, Dean Street, For Jane Bewick, Gateshead., London:: Longman, Green, Longman, And Roberts, And Sold By All Booksellers., 1862. [The Right of Translation is Reserved.]

Physical Description

xix, [1], 344 p., [2] pl.: illus.; 227 mm. (Quarto.)

General Note

Pages xix appear to include the frontispiece. The first unnumbered plate is bound in between p. 50 and p.51; the second, between p. [322] and p. 323. The illustrations on pp. 291-323 have versos blank.


[Frontis. (= pp. i, ii?), t.p.] - [Quotation from 'Leslie's Hand Book for Young Painters'] - Preface (by J.B.) - [Note, by T.B.] - Contents - [Text] - Appendix; [colophon].

Responsibility Note

The first illustration (frontispiece) is signed, 'Drawn by John Bewick 1781'. All other prints are unsigned.

The name of the printer, Robert Ward, is repeated in the colophon.


J. Uglow, Nature's engraver: a life of Thomas Bewick (2006); N. Tattersfield, Thomas Bewick (2001); T. Bewick, A memoir of Thomas Bewick written by himself, ed. I. Bain (rev. 1979); S. Roscoe, Thomas Bewick a bibliography (1953/R1973); A. Wheeler, 'Thomas Bewick's projected "History of British fishes" with notes on another book on fishes attributed to Bewick', in Festschrift für Claus Nissen (1973), p.651-86.

The context of Bewick's work is set out in A Garrett, A history of British wood engraving (1978); W.J. Linton, The masters of wood engraving (1889); J. Jackson and W.A. Chatto, A treatise on wood engraving (1839).

Summary Note

The first unnumbered plate shows a notice, 'Thomas Bewick Newcastle was Bound October the first 1767'. The second shows the fish, 'The Maigre. (Sciæna Aquila. - Cuvier)'. The frontispiece shows 'Cherryburn'. The illustrations on pages 291-321 show fish. The book is further decorated with wood-engraved headpieces and tailpieces showing incidents in British country life.

Binding Note

19th-century green cloth, upper and lower covers decorated in blind; spine lettered 'Memoir Of Bewick'.

Name as Subject


Engravers - Engraving - Great Britain - History - 18th century - 19th century
Art history - Biography - Great Britain - 19th century
Pictorial works - Wood engravings - Great Britain - 19th century


Thomas Bewick, source artist
John Bewick, draughtsman
Jane Bewick, publisher
Robert Ward, printer
Longman, Green, Longman and Roberts, publisher