Blowing up Bridge at Elster c1813
Napoleonic Wars: Blowing up the Bridge at Elster October c1813 London Published Dec 1st 1815 by J. Jenkins, 48 Strand. An original aquatint print from "The Martial achievements of Great Britain and Her Allies from 1799 to 1815. London: Printed for James Jenkins, No 48, Strand, By L. Harrison & J. C. Leigh, 373 Strand.
Original aquatint engraving on medium weight wove paper with fine hand colour. Drawing by William Heath (delt) with aquatint engraving by Thomas Sutherland (sculpt).
Good overall condition with exceptional original colour and wide margins. The plate has the date of publication and the name of the publisher beneath the engraved title. The approx engraved area of the plate is 8.5" x 7.75" (215mm x 195mm) including the engraved title text. Engraved plate mark area is approx 8.5 x 11.75 (215mm x 300mm). The large sheet size is approx 11.5" x 14" (290mm x 355mm).
The battle of Leipzig was the largest battle of the Napoleonic wars. On the night of October 18 to 19 1813, Napoleon began to withdraw his army across the river Elster. It was just a matter of time before the Allies would have destroyed his army. He was now outnumbered and out of ammunition. The retreat was covered by a fierce rearguard fought through the streets of Leipzig. The relatively orderly withdrawal became a disaster when a corporal, who had been charged with destroying the only bridge over the Elster, panicked and ignited the fuses early at one in the afternoon. The bridge was still crowded with retreating troops.
A genuine antique print over 200 years old.