Drawings and Engravings

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    In March 1795 the naturalist La Billardière, who had been interned by the Dutch for more than a year as a republican sympathizer, prepared to leave Batavia en route to Europe. His fellow internee, the artist Piron, ‘begged’ him to accept a duplicate set of ‘the drawings of costume and landscape that he had made in the course of the campaign’.1 Piron did not return to France, perhaps because he was then ‘too sick’ to stand the long voyage. He evidently remained in the general region, since La Motte du Portail, formerly a sub-lieutenant on the Espérance, reported seeing him in Manila in 1799.2 La Billardière’s Relation was duly illustrated by an Atlas of 44 plates comprising 52 separate engravings of people, their activities and ‘effects’, and natural history items. Piron is acknowledged as the original artist of 31 engravings, mostly attributed to Copia.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationCollecting in the South Sea: The Voyage of Bruni d’Entrecasteaux 1791–1794
    Editors Bronwen Douglas, Fanny Wonu Veys & Billie Lythberg
    Place of PublicationLeiden
    PublisherSidestone Press
    ISBN (Print)9789088905742
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

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