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View, England, London, Bank of England, Antique Print, Ackermann’s, London, 1816


Thomas Hosmer Shepherd (1793-1864) (after)
Daniel Havell (1785-1826) (engraver)
A View of the Bank of England
Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, London: 1816
Color-printed aquatint
13.75 x 19 inches, image
17 x 20.5 inches, plate mark
18 x 21.75 inches, overall
Provenance: M. Knoedler & Co., New York; Manufacturers Hanover, New York

A panoramic view of the gleaming exterior of the Bank of England during the English Regency period. The neoclassical architecture of the great British architect Sir John Soane is shown to dramatic effect. The lively activity on Threadneedle Street beside the bank gives a flavor of daily life in that period, with pedestrians, street vendors, workers, men on horses and horse-drawn carriages. Labels originally accompanying this example include one from the M. Knoedler & Co. art gallery with the information entered in fountain pen script, and a typed accession label from Manufacturers Hanover Bank.

Product description continues below.


The British Library summarized this history of the building as shown in this print:

Britain’s first national bank (now the Bank of England) was founded in 1694 to allow the government to raise money “upon a Fund of Perpetual Interest.” It was soon given a monopoly on the production of bank notes. In 1734, the bank moved to its present location in Threadneedle Street. Sir Robert Taylor extended the building between 1767 and 1770, and in 1788 it was reconstructed in neo-classical style by Sir John Soane. By the late-18th century, it had become known popularly as the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street.

Sir John Soane RA FSA FRS (1753–1837) was one of the most renowned ever of English architects. He specialized in neoclassical architecture, incorporating forms and motifs from ancicent Greece and Rome into a refined 18th century British style.  He became a professor of architecture at the Royal Academy and an official architect to the Office of Works. He was knighted in 1831. His best-known work was the Bank of England (now largely demolished), which had a widespread effect on neocclassical commercial architecture. He also designed Dulwich Picture Gallery, which became a major influence on the planning of subsequent art galleries and museums. His main legacy is  his eponymous museum in Lincoln’s Inn Fields in his former home and office, designed to display his collection of art works and ancient architectural artifacts.

Thomas Hosmer Shepherd was a British printmaker and painter. The son of an architectural draftsman, he was employed by Frederick Crace to make a large series of drawings of London. Many of his drawings were made into prints. They are characterized by precise observation and most contain figures, carriages or boats, giving the sense of daily life taking place. Other impressions of this print are in the collections of the British Museum, the City of London Metropolitan Archives, and the Yale Center for British Art.

Daniel Havell was a member of a British family of artists, an engraver and publisher of topographical and architectural works distinguished by a delicacy of line.

Ackermann & Co. was a prominent British publisher and printseller. The firm was founded by Rudolph Ackermann (1764-1834), publishing as R. Ackermann from 1795 to 1829. Ackermann was born in Germany and came to England in the 1780s. He pioneered lithography in Britain (though frequently working with color-printed etchings and aquatints), and became a leading publisher of fine colorplate books, decorative prints and magazines, as well as sheet music of the Regency period. In 1797, Ackermann relocated the business premises to 101 Strand, which were known by 1798 as “The Repository of Arts,” also the title of a periodical with a large number of prints that he published from 1809 to 1828. As suggested by the full title of the publication, Ackermann’s Repository of the Arts, Literature, Commerce, Manufactures, Fashions and Politics, the subject matter of the Repository was wide ranging. Among the most influential and popular images in the series were studies of Regency decorative arts, interior design and fashion, as well as various city and country views. Ackermann was a major patron of British artists and designers, notably the famous caricaturist Thomas Rowlandson (1756-1827), whose works were featured in the famous set of London interiors and exteriors entitled Microcosm of London (R. Ackermann, London, 1808-10). Ackermann also manufactured and sold art supplies. In 1829, Rudolph transferred the business to three of his sons, who traded as Ackermann & Co. from 1829 to 1859. During the 20th century the company had offices in London, Paris, New York and Chicago. The business continued until the end of the century, last operating as Arthur Ackermann and Son.

Full publication information: London. Published Aug’t 1st 1816, at R. Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, 101 Strand.

Condition: Generally very good, recently professionally cleaned and deacidified with only light remaining toning, wear, handling, noting minor toning from former matting in outer margins.


“A View of the Bank of England.” British Museum. (15 March 2021).

“A View of the Bank of England.” Yale Center for British Art. (15 March 2021).

“Bank of England.” London Picture Archive. (15 March 2021).

“Havell.” The Grove Dictionary of Art. New York: Macmillan. 2000. (6 May 2002).

Maxted, Ian. “The London book trades 1775-1800: a preliminary checklist of members.” Exeter Working Papers in British Book Trade History. U.K.: Devon Library and Information Services. 24 January 2005. (4 May 2007).

“Rudolph Ackermann.” National Portrait Gallery. May 2007. (4 May 2007).


Additional information


19th Century