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The Ancient World
19th Century Photographers

If we examine the great empires of the Ancient World the remaining monuments were attracting considerable interest through the nineteenth century with the expansion of the grand tour to the more educated middle classes.
As an indication of this rise in interest we can example the publication of the Baedeker guides that were an essential item in the traveling cases of the cultural inquisitive tourist. The first Baedeker guides covering parts of Italy came out in German and French editions in 1861 but these were just the first examples of what was to become a veritable library - by 1878 there were Baedeker guides available on Egypt in both German (Unter-Ägypten, 1877) and English (Lower Egypt, 1878) and volumes on Palestine and Syria (GER: Palästina und Syrien, 1875 ENG: Palestine and Syria, 1876, FRE: Palestine et Syrie, 1882) and Greece had a German volume (1883) and an English edition (1889).
In 1869 Thomas Cook, an innovator in leisure travel, ran his first tour to Egypt and Palestine and on November 17 of the same year the Suez Canal was finally opened. The canal greatly expanded traffic to Asia and the places of interest along the route became increasingly popular and the demand for photographs as souvenirs expanded.
From the early 1840s Joseph-Philibert Girault de Prangey was taking Daguerreotypes of major monuments such as the Roman forum and the Acropolis in Athens and each country was visited by traveling photographers and foreign photographers established studios in the major tourist centers of Rome, Athens, Cairo, Beirut, Constantinople and many others.
The following lists are not meant to be complete but a rather indicative of some of the key photographers.
  • Maxime Du Camp
  • Félix Teynard
  • John Beasley Greene
  • Francis Frith
  • Gustave Le Gray
  • Joseph-Philibert Girault de Prangey
  • Calvert Richard Jones
  • Giorgio Sommer
  • Sommer & Behles
  • Robert Macpherson
  • Giacchino Altobelli
  • Auguste Lesouëf
  • Joseph-Philibert Girault de Prangey
  • Adolphe Braun
  • Philippos Margaritis
This exhibition will expand and I‘d be interested in hearing about any further examples that you might have in your collections. 



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