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In marked contrast to Sadler's Well Theatre this auditorium catered largely to a middle-class audience. It first opened in 1732 when pantomines and plays as well as operas were peformed. 

The theatre shown here was sadly destroyed by fire in September 1808, though rebuilding work began quickly. The new theatre, a neoclassical design by Robert Smirke (architect of the British Museum) opened in 1809 and was illustrated in Ackermann's Microcosm of London  in 1810. That  too burnt down in 1857 , though it, too, was to burn down in 1857 to be replaced with the building we know today as the Royal Opera House.


Ackermann's Microcosm of London 

The print was published in Ackermann's Microcosm of London, a three-volume work was published between 1808 and 1810. The volumes offer a lively insight into London life of the Regency period. The architectural draughtsman Auguste Charles Pugin  (father of the more famous Pugin, architect of the Palace of Westminster) drew the buildings and the lively figures are executed by Thomas Rowlandson, caricaturist and illustrator. The watercolours would then be engraved by a team of engravers including John Bluck, Joseph Constantine Stadler, Thomas Sunderland, John Hill and Richard Bankes Harraden, anonymous hand-colourists and authors William Henry Pyne and William Combe. 



Covent Garden Theatre, Auguste Charles Pugin & Thomas Rowlandson - Antique Print

SKU: 1152
  • Item Number: 1152
    Title: Covent Garden Theatre
    Artist: Auguste Charles Pugin & Thomas Rowlandson
    Engraver: John Bluck
    Medium: Hand-coloured etching with aquatint
    Date: 1808
    Publisher: Rudolph Ackermann in  Microcosm of London

    Framed size (h x w): 347 x 392mm

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