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A view of the iron miner and waterfall on the pitt road near Abergavenny, South Wales

A view of the iron miner and waterfall on the pitt road near Abergavenny, South Wales

Medium: Watercolour

Date: 1775

Shelfmark: Ktop XXXI

Item number: 5-b

Genre: Topographical Drawing

View near the historic market town of Abergavenny. The predominant local industries were coal mining and ironworking, which meant that the town prospered, particularly in the late-18th and early-19th centuries. The introduction of the steam engine in the 1740s meant that coal resources were better and more quickly transported.

During the 18th century, artists began rather desperately to hunt for the 'picturesque' in the landscape, and even industrial scenes were painted to look attractive. Note that the emphasis in this picture is on the surrounding scenery rather than the actual mine. The Wye Valley was considered a particularly excellent place to tour on account of its varied scenery and medieval ruins.

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