Peter F. Rothermel. "Patrick Henry Delivering His Celebrated Speech In The House of Burgesses, Virginia. A.D. 1765."
Philadelphia: Art Union of Philadelphia, 1852. 22 1/2 x 17 3/4. Engraving by Alfred Jones. Strong impression. With Art Union blind-stamp. Some time toning to print with minor staining in upper margin corners. Several old repaired tears in image. Print is most likely backed on an old board, with acidic top mat, and has not been examined out of the frame. Sold as is. With photocopy of print key and advertisement. A/A
Like the American Art Union, the Art Union of Philadelphia was formed in the mid-nineteenth century for the appreciation of American art. Historical depictions were one of the favorite topics of the prints issued by the Union for its subscribers. This print is a dramatically realized scene showing Patrick Henry delivering his famous speeches to the Virginia House of Burgesses in 1765. "Caesar had his Brutus--Charles the First, his Cromwell--and George the Third may profit by their example," and then to cries of 'treason,' "If this be treason, make the most of it." Peter Rothermel, best known for his famous image of the Battle of Gettysburg, presents the historic tableau in dramatic fashion, Henry standing calmly in the center of the turmoil of the other delegates, pointing to the higher authority of heaven. An emotional and patriotic rendering of this early Revolutionary episode.