The Drawing Room at Broughton Castle c.1840
Joseph Nash (1809-1878)
“The romantic inclusion of scenes of everyday Jacobean life, as seen in this work, caught the public imagination at a time of growing interest in English architectural heritage.”
Watercolour and pencil on paper
19 x 13 inches; 48.5 x 33 cm
Signed "J. Nash".
This fine picture is one of the original watercolours for Joseph Nash’s celebrated “Mansions of England in the Olden Time”, a four-volume series of some one hundred lithographs published between 1839-49. It shows the drawing room at Broughton Castle in Oxfordshire, one of the finest castles in England.
The “Mansions of England” project was a risky venture for Nash, who was relatively unknown when he decided to embark on the idea with little guarantee of success. Nash would have visited Broughton during his exhaustive travels around the country making detailed sketches and drawings in situ. Fortunately, the “Mansions” was a great success, and Nash’s engravings were widely published in the popular press.
The romantic inclusion of scenes of everyday Jacobean life, as seen in this work, caught the public imagination at a time of growing interest in English architectural heritage. This was also the time of the Gothic revival led by Auguste Pugin, whose pupil Nash was. As a result, Nash’s works in part led to the increase in the desire to visit country houses, something now becoming much easier for the urban classes thanks to the growing development of the railway.