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19th Century Painting Watercolor View of Roman Forum by Ibbetson Signed Dated
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19th Century Painting Watercolor View of Roman Forum by Ibbetson Signed Dated


This view of the Roman Forum show a daily scenes of Roman life before the complete Campaign excavation; painted by John Thomas Ibbetson, later Sir John Thomas Selwyn, 6th Bart (sometimes Selwin), Ibbetson was born in 1789, younger son of Sir James Ibbetson, 2nd Bart (circa 1741-1795) and his wife Jane, daughter of John Caygill and his wife Jane Selwyn. He married at Nacton, Suffolk on 8 September 1825, Isabella, who died 24 September 1858, daughter of General John Leveson Gower and his wife Isabella Mary, second daughter of Philip Bowes-Broke (d. 1802), and had one son Sir Henry John Selwyn-Ibbetson (1826-1902), later 1st Lord Rookwood, who unsuccessfully contested Ipswich in the elections of 1857 and 1859. Ibbetson exhibited his drawings at the Royal Academy 1811-1812 and at Walter Fawkes's exhibition in 1817, in which year he toured Italy and Sicily. Under the terms of his mother’s will, in 1825 John Thomas Ibbetson changed his name legally to John Thomas Selwin, and on the death of his nephew, the 5th baronet, on 6 July 1861 succeeded as 6th Baronet Ibbetson. He lived many years at Bosmere Hall, Creeting St Mary, Suffolk and painted watercolours of many views in the area, including many of his or of his relations properties. His sister Harriet of Henley Hall, near Ipswich, who died on 30 October 1843, aged 67, was buried in Henley Church, Suffolk. On inheriting the title he also became the owner of Down Hall, Hatfield Heath, Essex where, as Sir John Thomas Selwin, he died on 20 March 1869, aged 84, being succeeded by his son Sir Henry John Selwin Ibbetson. Watercolor (American English) or watercolor (British English; see spelling differences), also aquarelle (French, diminutive of Latin aqua "water"), is a painting method in which the paints are made of pigments suspended in a water-based solution. Watercolor refers to both the medium and the resulting artwork. Aquarelles painted with water-soluble colored ink instead of modern water colors are called "aquarellum atramento" (Latin for "aquarelle made with ink") by experts. However, this term has been more and more passing out of use. The traditional and most common support, material to which the paint is applied, for watercolor paintings is paper. Other supports include papyrus, bark papers, plastics, vellum, leather, fabric, wood and canvas. [3] Watercolor paper is often made entirely or partially with cotton. This gives the surface the appropriate texture and minimizes distortion when wet. Watercolors are usually translucent, and appear luminous because the pigments are laid down in a pure form with few fillers obscuring the pigment colors. Several factors contributed to the spread of watercolor painting during the 18th century, particularly in England. Among the elite and aristocratic classes, watercolor painting was one of the incidental adornments of a good education; mapmakers, military officers, and engineers used it for its usefulness in depicting properties, terrain, fortifications, field geology, and for illustrating public works or commissioned projects. Watercolor artists were commonly brought with the geological or archaeological expeditions, funded by the Society of Dilettanti (founded in 1733), to document discoveries in the Mediterranean, Asia, and the New World. These expeditions stimulated the demand for topographical painters, who churned out memento paintings of famous sites (and sights) along the Grand Tour to Italy that was undertaken by every fashionable young man of the time. In the late 18th century, the English cleric William Gilpin wrote a series of hugely popular books describing his picturesque journeys throughout rural England, and illustrated them with self-made sentimentalized monochrome watercolors of river valleys, ancient castles, and abandoned churches. This example popularized watercolors as a form of personal tourist journal. The confluence of these cultural, engineering, scientific, tourist, and amateur interests culminated in the celebration and promotion of watercolor as a distinctly English "national art". William Blake published several books of hand-tinted engraved poetry, provided illustrations to Dante's Inferno, and he also experimented with large monotype works in watercolor. Among the many other significant watercolorists of this period were Thomas Gainsborough, John Robert Cozens, Francis Towne, Michael Angelo Rooker, William Pars, Thomas Hearne, and John Warwick Smith. The Roman Forum, also known by its Latin name Forum Romanum (Italian: Foro Romano), is a rectangular forum (plaza) surrounded by the ruins of several important ancient government buildings at the center of the city of Rome. Citizens of the ancient city referred to this space, originally a marketplace, as the Forum Magnum, or simply the Forum. For centuries the Forum was the center of day-to-day life in Rome: the site of triumphal processions and elections; the venue for public speeches, criminal trials, and gladiatorial matches; and the nucleus of commercial affairs. Here statues and monuments commemorated the city's great men. The teeming heart of ancient Rome, it has been called the most celebrated meeting place in the world, and in all history. Located in the small valley between the Palatine and Capitoline Hills, the Forum today is a sprawling ruin of architectural fragments and intermittent archaeological excavations attracting 4.5 million or more sightseers yearly. Many of the oldest and most important structures of the ancient city were located on or near the Forum. The Roman Kingdom's earliest shrines and temples were located on the Southeastern edge. These included the ancient former royal residence, the Regia (8th century BC), and the Temple of Vesta (7th century BC), as well as the surrounding complex of the Vestal Virgins, all of which were rebuilt after the rise of imperial Rome. Other archaic shrines to the northwest, such as the Umbilicus Urbis and the Vulcanal (Shrine of Vulcan), developed into the Republic's formal Comitium (assembly area). This is where the Senate, as well as Republican government itself, began. The Senate House, government offices, tribunals, temples, memorials and statues gradually cluttered the area. Over time the archaic Comitium was replaced by the larger adjacent Forum and the focus of judicial activity moved to the new Basilica Aemilia (179 BC). Some 130 years later, Julius Caesar built the Basilica Julia, along with the new Curia Julia, refocusing both the judicial offices and the Senate itself. This new Forum, in what proved to be its final form, then served as a revitalized city square where the people of Rome could gather for commercial, political, judicial and religious pursuits in ever greater numbers. Eventually much economic and judicial business would transfer away from the Forum Romanum to the larger and more extravagant structures (Trajan's Forum and the Basilica Ulpia) to the north. The reign of Constantine the Great saw the construction of the last major Expansion of the Forum complex, the Basilica of Maxentius (312 AD). This returned the political center to the Forum until the fall of the Western Roman Empire almost two centuries later. The Roman Forum was a site for many artists and architects studying in Rome to sketch during the 17th through the 19th century. The focus of many of these works produced by visiting Northern artists was on current state of the Roman Forum, known locally as the "Campo Vaccino", or "cow field", due to the livestock who grazed on the largely ignored section of the city. Claude Lorrain's 1636 Campo Vaccino shows the extent to which the building in the forum were buried under sediment. From about 1740 to his death in 1772, the artist Giovanni Battista Piranesi worked on a series of 135 etchings depicting 18th century Rome. Renowned British artist J.M.W. Turner painted Modern Rome, Campo Vaccino in 1839, following his final trip to the city. The excavation by Carlo Fea, who began clearing the debris from the Arch of Septimius Severus in 1803 marked the beginning of clearing the Forum. Excavations were officially begun in 1898 by the Italian government under the Minister of Public Instruction, Dr. Baccelli. The 1898 restoration had three main objectives: restore fragmented pieces of columns, bases, and cornices to their original locations in the Forum, reach the lowest possible level of the Forum without damaging existing structures, and to identify already half-excavated structures, along with the senate house and Basilica Aemilia. These state-funded excavations were led by Dr. Giacomo Boni until he died in 1925, stopping briefly during World War I. In 2008 heavy rains caused structural damage to the modern concrete covering holding the "Black Stone" marble together over the Lapis Niger in Rome. Excavations in the forum continue, with new discoveries by archaeologists working in the forum since 2009 leading to questions about Rome's exact age. One of these recent discoveries includes a tufa wall near the Lapis Niger used to channel water from nearby aquifers. Around the wall, pottery remains and food scraps allowed archaeologists to date the likely construction of the wall to the 8th or 9th century BC, over a century before the traditional date of Rome's founding.


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