Interior of Mount Gambier.

George French Angas’s view of the interior of the principal crater of Mount Gambier from the largest and earliest series of lithographs of the infant colony of South Australia. Angas had accompanied South Australian Governor, Sir George Grey in 1844 … Read Full Description


S/N: ASAIL-046-SC–219059
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Full Title:

Interior of Mount Gambier.






In good condition.


Lithgraph with original hand colouring

Image Size: 

x 250mm

Paper Size: 

x 360mm
Interior of Mount Gambier. - Antique View from 1847

Genuine antique



George French Angas’s view of the interior of the principal crater of Mount Gambier from the largest and earliest series of lithographs of the infant colony of South Australia.

Angas had accompanied South Australian Governor, Sir George Grey in 1844 in an expedition to explore the south east of the state. The party continued inland from the coast and climbed Mount Schank and Mount Gambier, extinct volcanoes which dominate the landscape. They also discovered and named Mount Burr. They had left some of the expedition at Rivoli Bay to survey the area. Angas’s illustration of Mount Gambier shows what is now known as the Blue Lake, because of the way in which it changes to a bright blue between November and April, before reverting to a duller colour for the remaining months of the year.

Angas’s description; the accompanying illustration presents the interior of the principal crater, sketched in May, 1844. It is thus described in my journal at the moment. “After toiling up the upward slopes of the mountain, at the most accessible place we could find, the sudden view of the interior of the largest crater burst upon us, and called forth our rapturous admiration. It was indeed a glorious and enchanting scene; a vast hollow basin, shut out from the world as it were, by the walls of lava that surround it, and covered with emerald verdure. …We bivouacked for the night within the crater, our fires glimmering like stars along the edge of the lake.

From George French Angas’s, South Australia Illustrated.


Gill, T. Bibliography of South Australia. Adelaide. (1886) 1976.: p.16.
Ferguson, J. A. Bibliography of Australia Volumes 1-8, Canberra 1976: Volume IV, 4457..
Wantrup, J. Australian Rare Books. Sydney 1987: p. 309-316..
Tregenza, J. George French Angas. Artist, Traveller and Naturalist 1822-1886. Adelaide 1980:.

National Gallery Australia: NGA
National Library Australia: Bib ID 8059950
State Library South Australia: record b2793076~S1

George French Angas (1822 - 1886)

Angas was a painter, lithographer, engraver and naturalist, fourth child and eldest son of George Fife Angas, a merchant and banker. As the eldest son he was expected to join his father's firm, but some months in a London counting house proved a disillusioning experience. In 1841 he took art lessons for four months from Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins, a natural history painter and lithographer, and armed with this instruction set out to see the world. He began in the Mediterranean publishing, A Ramble in Malta and Sicily in the Autumn of 1841.......Illustrated with Sketches Taken on the Spot, and Drawn on the Stone by the Author, the following year. Angas's father had established the South Australian Company in 1836 and had large areas of land as well as banking interests in the province. George French sailed for South Australia in 1843 in the Augustus, arriving in Adelaide on 1st January 1844. Within days he had joined an exploring party selecting runs for the South Australia Company. They traveled through the Mount Lofty Ranges to the Murray River and down to Lake Coorong and Angas sketched views of the countryside, native animals and the customs and dwellings of the Narrinyerri people. Later he drew scenes on his father's land - 28,000 acres in the Barossa Valley - and accompanied George Grey's expedition to the then unknown south-east as unofficial artist. In July 1844 Angas visited New Zealand. Guided by two Maoris, he traveled on foot and by canoe through both islands, painting portraits of Maoris and views. Angas's father died in 1879, leaving a vast estate from which George French received only a annuity of 1000 pounds. In 1884 he went to Dominica on a collecting expedition, finding shells, moths, butterflies and birds. Dogged by rheumatism and neuralgia during his last years, Angas died in London on 4 October 1886.

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James William Giles (1801 - 1870)

Giles was a painter and lithographer born in Glasgow , the son of a designer at the local calico. The family moved to Aberdeen around 1805 where his father worked in a printing factory at Aberdeen and was an artist of some repute. His father's early death threw his son at an early age upon his own resources and at 13 he maintained himself, his mother and sister by painting, and before he was 20 was teaching private classes in Aberdeen. At 21 he married a widow Clementina Farquharson. He then became a member of the Royal Scottish Academy and elected to the council of the Spalding Club. He first exhibited at the "Royal Institution for the Encouragement of the Fine Arts in Scotland", and in 1829 became an academician of the Royal Scottish Academy, and contributed numerous works to its exhibitions from that time until near the close of his career. He also exhibited frequently at the British Institution in London, and occasionally at the Royal Academy and the Society of British Artists.

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