Frozen River Thames Print

Contributed by OrangePeel

Frozen River Thames Print

The object is an 18th Century print, measuring approximately 16cm by 12cm showing various scenes of London life and the name Robert Willmott in the middle. It also has on it a four-line verse, which indicates that this print, and prints like it, were sold as souvenirs to visitors to the London "Frost Fair" of 1716.

These events occurred fairly regularly at that time, when the Thames froze over in London.

It can be thought of as a demonstration of the cyclical nature of climate, of a time when winters were very cold, and due to the lack of impact of humans in their environment at that time, the Thames flowed a lot slower and colder than it does today.

It also points to the desire of man to have a tangible object to remember places or events - a keep-sake or momento. It's the equivalent to the modern souvenir, pronouncing that, "My ancestor went to London, and all I got was this lousy print."

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Printed on the River Thames




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