Collection: Antique Steel Engravings

During the early part of the 19th century copper was replaced by steel for many sorts of printing plates. An American, Jacob Perkins, developed a process of steel engraving for banknotes in 1819. Steel was much harder wearing, meaning that thousands of impressions could be taken before signs of wear appeared. Steel also allowed the engraver to produce much finer detail than copper, because the wear on the plate was much slower.
The engraving was made on steel that had been annealed to soften it. After the plate had been engraved on it was rehardened.
With the advent of steel engraving, there was a new impetus given to produce illustrated books, as the much greater number of prints possible from a steel plate reduced the costs of printing images.
1820 to 1840 was the last great age of line engraving. Steel allowed line engraving to be pushed to the limit, with prints being produced in such detail that one needs a magnifying glass to see the individual lines.

48 products
  • Parish Church, Brighton - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1855
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    £30.00
  • 'Pavilion Brighton' - Antique Steel Engraving, 1840
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    £85.00
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    £85.00
  • 'Napoleon and the Pope at Fontainebleau' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1850s
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    £32.00
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    £32.00
  • 'Brighton Chain Pier' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1859
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    £85.00
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    £85.00
  • 'Chain Pier Brighton' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1831
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    £70.00
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    £70.00
  • 'The Pavillion' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1848
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    £58.00
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    £58.00
  • 'Fawcett the Comedian' - Antique Steel Engraving, 1860
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    £12.00
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    £12.00
  • 'Sontag - Anna' - Steel Engraving, circa 1850
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    £35.00
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    £35.00
  • 'Cruvelli' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1860
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    £48.00
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    £48.00
  • 'Pavilion at Brighton' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1830
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    £68.00
  • 'Talegale and Tamarinier' - Antique French Steel Engraving, circa 1837
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    £10.00
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    £10.00
  • 'White Tailed Sea Eagle' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1840
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    £15.00
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    £15.00
  • 'Spotted Totanus and the Common Totanus' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1840
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    £15.00
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    £15.00
  • 'Brighton Chain Pier' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1859
    Regular price
    £130.00
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    £130.00
  • 'Serena Rescued by the Red-Cross Knight' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1860's
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    £30.00
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    £30.00
  • 'Captain Cook' - Antique Steel Engraving, circa 1850's
    Regular price
    £48.00
    Sale price
    £48.00