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Delineations of Fonthill and its abbey

John Rutter

RA Collection: Book

Record number



Variant Title

Delineations of Fonthill and its abbey by John Rutter. Proofs & Etchings on India Paper. MDCCCXXIII. [Cover title].


Shaftesbury; London: Published by the author ; Charles Knight and Co. ; Longman, Hurst, and Co. ; Hurst, Robinson, and Co. ; John and Arthur Arch., MDCCCXXIII

Physical Description

xxvi, 112, [5] p., [14] leaves of plates (1 folded) : ill. (some col.), coats of arms, col. map, geneal. tables, plans ; 37 cm.

General Note

In pencil on front pastedown: “Extra large paper copy with plates in 2 states and some in colour.”
Three Guineas & a half to Non-Subscribers. [Front cover].
With a coloured engraved title-page, a coloured aquatint frontispiece, a large folding lithograph plan and 1 coloured aquatint and 10 engraved plates, + 1 extra view of the Abbey not called for, 3 pedigrees one of which is double-paged, engravings in the text.

Summary Note

A large paper copy of the first and only edition of what is the best contemporary publication on William Beckford's Gothic house at Fonthill, built for him by James Wyatt between 1796 and 1812. Rutter began the book when the house still belonged to Beckford, but completed it after Beckford had sold the house to John Farquhar.


The front pastedown carries the armourial bookplate of William, Duke of Bedford, Erdsleigh.

Binding Note

Quarter-bound in black leather. Cream paper covers. Spine lettered in gilt: "Fonthill Abbey by J. Rutter. 1823"