J. Ruff after Salomon Corrodi
Two Views of Victorian Florence
12 x 9 inches (image)
A pair of aquatint and line engravings by J. Ruff after Corrodi's drawings; published in Rome and Florence circa 1850.
These charming scenes depict two very familiar views of Florence in Tuscany, a perennial favourite with English tourists in pursuit of antiquity. From the late C17th onwards the English upper classes began to embark upon what was to become known as The Grand Tour, a journey across Europe lasting typically up to six months, visiting historic and cultural sites. The climax of this journey would be a prolonged stay in somewhere like The Bay of Naples, the Athenian Acropolis or a visit to the cities of Rome, Venice and Florence. In these prints we see wealthy visitors taking in the sights whether it be a distant view of the Duomo from the Boboli Gardens or the more immediate experience of the hustle and bustle of the Piazza Signora in front of the Palazzo Vecchio. By the mid C19th train travel was opening up such attractions to the masses. Those who could not afford an original painting as a souvenir would be content to purchase an engraving such as these.