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Clifford Webb - Roman Wall

Roman Wall

‘In clear and elegant prose he described how lanes and hedges, copses, farmsteads, fields and place names could tell the story of the past and explain the configuration of the present. His fascination with and evident delight in such details as Anglo-Saxon estate boundaries, ridge-and-furrow field patterns and the street plans of medieval towns spoke from the page, and the grimy quality of the dated black-and-white photographs only strengthened the spell he cast.’

Annabel Walker celebrated the English landscape and The Making of the English Landscape by W. G. Hoskins in Slightly Foxed Issue 4. Rather than a grimy black-and-white photograph, the article was illustrated with this woodcut of the Roman Wall by Clifford Webb to demonstrate just how wonderful the English countryside can be.

About the contributor

Clifford Webb was born in London and trained as a lithographer until the First World War, when he served the British Army and as a captain in the Indian Army. He was wounded during the war and turned back to his craft, studying at the Westminster School of Art and later teaching there, at the Birmingham School of Art, and at St Martin’s. During the 1920s he was prominent among the group of artists who brought about a revival of wood engraving, and was a founding member of the Society of Wood Engravers. Webb specialized in animals and landscapes, producing richly detailed prints despite the modest subject matter. He wrote and illustrated his own children’s books, as well as those written by his wife Ella Monckton, and Arthur Ransome’s famous Swallows & Amazons series.

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