John Singleton Copley. "The Death of Major Peirson and the defeat of the French troops in the market place of St Helier's in the island of Jersey Jany 6, 1781."
London: John & Josiah Boydell, April 25, 1796. 22 1/2 x 30 5/8 (image). Engraved by James Heath, Historical Engraver to his Majesty. Margins mostly trimmed to image with remnants of bottom margin with partial lettering of artist, publication information and engraver below image. Small portion of upper right hand corner missing. Excellent, crisp strike. Print has been professionally conserved and entire print lined with rice paper. Else, good condition.
This 18th century print is after John Singleton Copley's famous painting "The Death of Major Peirson" executed 1782-84. The original oil painting, now in the Tate Gallery, London, celebrated an incident in the town square of St. Helier on the Channel Isle of Jersey. French forces had almost taken the town and island when a young Major Francis Peirson rallied the British forces, counterattacked, and drove the invaders off. At the moment of victory, the youthful officer was killed, and this picture showed him being carried from the field amid the excitement and terror of battle.