This charming hand-colored aquatint shows Friedrich Accum giving a chemistry lecture at the Surrey Institution, a short-lived organization (it opened in 1808 and closed in 1823) that presented scientific, literary, and musical programs for ladies and gentlemen in London. The signatures at the bottom read “Rowlandson & Pugin delt et sculpt” and “J. C. Stadler aquat” and “London Pub. Sept 1st 1809, at R. Ackermann’s Repository of Arts 101 Strand.”
Augustus Charles Pugin (1762-1832), an Anglo-French artist, drew the architectural features of this image. Thomas Rowlandson (1756-1827), a London artist, drew the people. Joseph Constantine Stadler (active 1780-1812), a German artist working in England, produced the plate. Rudolph Ackermann, a German immigrant whose popular print and picture emporium was known as the Repository of Arts, commissioned the work and included it in The Microcosm of London (1808-1810), an ambitious three-volume work produced under his auspices.
Ref: F. Kurzer, “A History of the Surrey Institution,” Annals of Science 57 (2000): 109-141.
John Ford, Ackermann 1783-1983: The Business of Art (London, 1983).
Matthew Payne & James Payne, Regarding Thomas Rowlandson, 1757-1827 (London, 2010).
Currently not on view
Object Name
date made
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
overall: 10 1/2 in x 13 in; 26.67 cm x 33.02 cm
place made
United Kingdom: England, London
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Prints from the Physical Sciences Collection
Science & Mathematics
Measuring & Mapping
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
Prints from the Physical Sciences Collection
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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