This print, is based on an engraving of Eskdale Mill, Wilton Beck, Cumberland, by the artist Thomas Allom, engraved by A le Petit, 1833.
This beautiful evocative print derives from a 2 volume set written in 1832, amongst the earliest “tourism books”. Its capturing of the place, and its energy is still as relevant and interesting now as when it was published over 180 years ago.
Originally published in “Westmorland, Cumberland, Durham, and Northumberland”, Illustrated, by H Fisher, R Fisher and P Jackson, Newgate Street, London, 1832-35.
Interestingly Whillan Beck is written as Wilton Beck. A mistaken Cumbrian dialect?
The accompanying text expounded the delights of the location
“In Cumberland are two rivers of the name of Esk: one of which, after flowing through the beautiful valley of Eskdale, continues its course, till it at length falls into the sea at Ravenglass.
At the head of Eskdale, some remains of a Roman fortress are still visible. The scenery of the vale comprises some of the most picturesque objects in the lake district, including Birker Force and Stanley Gill. A few dispersed dwellings are scattered in the valley, surrounded by rocky knolls, beautifully enriched with trees, and bordered by uplands, on which large flocks of sheep graze in undisturbed quiet.
The ready and powerful aid constantly afforded by the mountain streams, has naturally led to the erection of many water-mills in this romantic district; one of these forms a prominent object in the present Illustration.
Amongst the choice morceaux provided in this seat of the picturesque for the gratification of the pictorial gourmand, few can be met with more suitable for artistic effect than Eskdale Mill. Free from all stiffness of outline and architectural precision, its rude appearance harmonizes well with the rich accompaniments that nature has cast around it. The wheel and stream, the rocky knolls and clustering foliage, and the glimpse obtained of the upland pasturages, combine together with amazing effect, and produce a picture richer in composition than any that might be wrought from the artist’s imagination.”
morceaux – a short artistic composition.