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Letters of Rowland Whyte (1595-1608) : Memoir 268 What Ever Happened to the U.S. Congress's Portraits of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette? Retracing the Events that Led to the Conflagration of the Capitol and the Loss of the Pictures on 24-25 August 1814: Tran. of the American Philosophical Society V
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Letters of Rowland Whyte (1595-1608) What Ever Happened to the U.S. Congress's Portraits
Provides the first complete edition, annotated and with modernized spelling, of these important late-Elizabethan letters, written by Rowland Whyte as the personal agent and advisor at court of Robert Sidney, Viscount Lisle and first Earl of Leicester. His series of 292 surviving letters to Sidney, written between September 1595 and December 1602, were partly intended as intelligence documents, keeping Sidney fully briefed on court affairs and gossip. This edition also includes a shorter sequence of Whyte’s surviving letters to Gilbert Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, concerning the marriage of Talbot’s daughter, Lady Mary, to Robert Sidney’s rich and increasingly powerful nephew, William Herbert, Earl of Pembroke. A useful resource for the last years of Queen Elizabeth’s reign. Illus. One of the greatest unsolved mysteries in American political culture is what became of the United States Congress’s state portraits of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette during the British invasion of the Capitol, Washington, D.C., on the night of 24–25 August 1814. Conceived by Benjamin Franklin during a diplomatic mission, requested by the American delegates at the height of the War of Independence, and granted by the French king after the signing of the Treaty of Paris, these official full-length images of the French monarchs arrayed in ceremonial magnificence were recently identified as atelier copies after Antoine-François Callet’s Louis XVI and Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun’s Marie-Antoinette (both 1783) and traced through Congress’s successive assembly rooms at New York City (1785), Philadelphia (1790), and Washington (1800). The fate of the royal portraits has been difficult to determine due to the incomplete documentary record and conflicting eyewitness accounts. Larkin initially takes a telescopic approach to the problem, moving from British and French production of state portraits to assert political claims in North America and despoliation of Western European countries of their art treasures, to show British and American interests at stake in the practice of looting and incendiary warfare waged across the Great Lakes and the Chesapeake Bay prior to the destruction of the public buildings in Washington, D.C. He then pursues a microscopic approach, analyzing period documents, letters, images, and plans to test the viability of two theories—that the royal portraits were burned by British troops during their occupation of the capital or looted by American scavengers during the chaotic aftermath. While physical evidence of the portrait artifacts remains elusive, this study of the images as objects of desire, danger, and loss breaks new ground for scholars desirous of constituting an art and material history for the War of 1812.
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T. Lawrence Larkin is Professor of Seventeenth- to Nineteenth-Century European Art at Montana State University, Bozeman. He has published on aspects of early modern French and American art and culture, with a two-fold interest in the portrait patronage and mythical permutations of Queen Marie-Antoinette and the trans-Atlantic diplomatic gifts and political culture of French, British, and American governments during the Revolutionary and Imperial Eras. His books include a monograph, In Search of Marie-Antoinette: Stefan Zweig, Irving Thalberg, and Norma Shearer (Palgrave-Macmillan), and an edited volume, Politics & Portraits in the United States & France during the Age of Revolution (Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press), both published in 2019.
Lunar Calendars of the Pre-Columbian Maya: Transactions, APS (Volume 109, Part 1) Wright's Ferry Mansion, 2 Volume Set: Volume 1: The House; Volume 2: The Collection
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Lunar Calendars of the Pre-Columbian Maya Wright's Ferry Mansion: Volume 1: The House; Volume 2: The Collection
Pre-Columbian Maya interest in the waxing and waning of the Moon is well documented. This rare example of interdisciplinary scholarship brings together a deeply penetrating knowledge of positional astronomy and Maya hieroglyphic writing, two highly disparate areas of study, and synthesizes them into a thorough interpretation of the relationship between astronomical concepts in the Maya codices and monumental inscriptions. Prompted by the recent discovery of the Xulum 10K-2 lunar table, this volume is a logical follow-up to work published in 2011 by the Brickers, “Astronomy in the Maya Codices.” It is a comprehensive study of the Maya lunar calendar. Illus. A jewel of early 18th-century house museums, Wright’s Ferry Mansion is also Pennsylvania’s best-kept secret, tucked away along the banks of the Susquehanna River in Columbia, PA. Built in 1738 for the dynamic English Quaker Susanna Wright, the house has been restored and furnished by The von Hess Foundation. These beautiful volumes tell the fascinating history of the house and its original owner Susanna Wright, who was a friend of Benjamin Franklin and other luminaries of early Pennsylvania. It is the only Pennsylvania English Quaker house furnished exclusively to the first half of the 18th century. The collection includes important Philadelphia William and Mary and Queen Anne furniture and English ceramics, metals, glass, and needlework, all pre-dating 1750. The appendix contains the original text of numerous letters, wills, inventories, poems, and two treatises by Susanna Wright and her brother James. Author and art historian Elizabeth Meg Schaefer has been curator of the mansion since 1982. 2-volume hardcover set in slipcase. Vol. 1 describes the house and furnishings; Vol. 1 describes each item in detail. Color photos.
William Lewis, Esquire: Enlightened Statesman, Profound Lawyer, and Useful Citizen The Power of Maps and the Politics of Borders: Papers from the conference held at the American Philosophical Society, October 2019: Transactions, APS (Vol. 110, Part 4)
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William Lewis, Esquire: Enlightened Statesman, Profound Lawyer, and Useful Citizen The Power of Maps and the Politics of Border
Lewis (1752-1819) was a prominent Philadelphia lawyer, Federalist and abolitionist. His descendant Esther Ann McFarland spent years locating records by and about Lewis and compiling this study. “History buffs will be fascinated by this authentic account of the role a leading Phila. lawyer played in shaping the character of our nation while we transitioned from colonial to post-revolutionary times. As an advisor to our Founding Fathers, a champion of individual rights, a strong advocate for abolition of slavery, a state legislator, an inaugural officer of the Phila. Bar Assoc. and Pennsylvania’s first U.S. Attorney and second fed. judge, William Lewis had a major impact on the development of our laws and the balance achieved by our fed. and state governments.” Illus. Some papers include: Unpacking the Meaning of Maps, Power, and Boundaries; The Legacy of Major Sebastian Bauman’s Map of the Siege of Yorktown; Mapping Old and New Empires in the Early U.S.; Cherokee Boundaries Above, Below, and Beyond; Cherokee Territoriality, Anglo-American Surveying, and the Creation of Borders in the Early 19th-Century West; Chickasaw and Cherokee Resistance to American Colonization, 1785-1816; Hydrography, Natural History, and the Sea in the 19th Century; William Darby’s “A Map of the State of Louisiana” and the Extension of American Sovereignty over the “Neutral Ground” in the Louisiana-Texas Borderland, 1806-1819; Initiating the World’s Longest Unfortified Boundary; Mapping Inequality, Resistance, and Solutions in Early National Philadelphia. Illus.



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Other Presidency: Thomas Jefferson

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Other Presidency: Thomas Jefferson
The Other Presidency: Thomas Jefferson and the American Philosophical Society, by Patrick Spero, With research assistance by Abigail Shelton and John Kenney.


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