Waterloo : History of the war in France and Belgium, in 1815 : containing minute details of the battles of Quatre-Bras, Ligny, Wavre,...

Waterloo

<p> <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/O0N6Z8nqn9w?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> <br/> <br/>These maps and plans are from a folio issued to accompany William Siborne’s standard work on Waterloo, <i>History of the war in France and Belgium, in 1815</i>. Each of the four battles depicted—Quatre Bras, Ligny, Waterloo and Wavre—is shown at two or more times of day, by overprinting the monochrome base sheets with the coloured unit markings: blue for French, red for Anglo-Allied, and green for Prussian. The close-packed contour lines of the plans were produced by means of the ‘anaglyptograph’. Of the engraver, Alfred Robert Freebairn, the art historian Sir Lionel Cust wrote in the <i>Dictionary of National Biography</i> that ‘His later work seems to have been entirely confined to the production of engravings by the mechanical process, invented by Mr. John Bate, known as the “Anaglyptograph”. This machine was specially adapted for reproducing in engraving objects with raised surfaces, such as coins, medals, reliefs, &c.’ The objects in this instance were battlefield models prepared by Siborne. At the top of each sheet is an instruction regarding the light source; a note on the plates in volume 1 of the <i>History</i> explains that ‘In examining these anaglyptographic engravings from models of the undulations of the ground represented, it is absolutely necessary that the reader should place the <i>upper</i> margin of the Plate <i>nearest the light</i>. If the upper side be placed <i>furthest from</i> the light, then everything will appear reversed—the heights will become hollows, and the hollows heights. In short, when in the former position, these plates represent the model or <i>relievo</i>; when in the latter, the mould or <i>intaglio</i>.’</p>

 


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