Melton prior Institut


Linton- Life in the Collections

The Brothers Dalziel:

4) A Record of Fifty Years' Work in conjunction with many of the most distinguished artists of the period 1840-1890.

London 1901

George and Edward Dalziel were the owners of the most profitable and prolific engraving workshop in Victorian England. In their autobiography, they mention rivals in business like Joseph Swain and Linton only marginally. But the book nevertheless provides some valuable insights into the conditions of Victorian xylographic mass production. Although Linton himself had sometimes been on their payroll he didn’t think much of their standardized engraving manners. In his essays on xylography, he scornfully referred to the “Dalziel factory,” where “the engraver was degraded (...) and became a mere mechanic.”

Not without mawkishness, the brothers looked upon the triumphal procession of the half tone: “When we think of the vast mass of wonderful illustration given to the public, week by week of every conceivable class of subject, direct from the camera, in which the draughtsman has no part at all, and this work is of general beauty and truth, we feel that our occupation is gone.”



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