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Photograph (Experimental Photogenic Drawing), by Sir John Herschel, March 4, 1839

Inventory Number: 74474
Object Type:
Persons: Sir John Frederick William Herschel (Photographer)
Date Created: 1839
Accession Number: 1928-71
Brief Description: Experimental photogenic drawing by Sir John Herschel, March 4, 1839, made as a hypo fixing experiment during the earliest phase of his photographic researches. It is one of several experimental photographs which Herschel has annotated with a record of the weather and visibility conditions (an east wind at Slough carried London smog), and perhaps these conditions formed part of its experimental purpose (see 22719 and 83686, made on the same day).

Subject: engraving, landscape with shrine
Technique: contact copy (print) from a negative
Format: horizontal
Polarity: positive
Orientation: correct
Quality: x
Chemistry: silver based, hypo fixed
Coating: none
Inscription: date, weather and chemical notes
Paper: xxx
Condition: good
Purpose: a hypo fixing experiment; perhaps (in view of the inscription) also an exposure experiment prompted by the poor visibility conditions.

For fuller descriptive and historical commentary see narratives.
Primary Inscriptions: 'March 4 (East Wind & Smoke) | Sun greatly dulled | [?]Thawing | H.S. - [one over five] yet too strong' [in Herschel's hand].
Provenance: Presented by Miss Herschel and Lady Lubbock in 1928. They were the two surviving and youngest children of Sir John Herschel (Francisca and Constance).
Collection Group: Herschel's Photographic Experiments
Material(s): Paper
Height Width Depth Diameter Unit
76 116 mm


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