Sunday, 16 December 2018

The First Christmas Card

DC Editor Adam writes…

Today I'm reposting an instalment of my Cartoon & Comic Book Tour of London - a series of posts tracing the inky footsteps left behind in our capital by everyone from William Hogarth to Scooby Doo. It's been one of the most popular series of all on The Daily Constitutional and I had a lot of fun earlier this year when I turned it into a real life walking tour.


This post first appeared in December 2015…



Panel 26: The First Christmas Card


The tale of the first commercially produced Christmas card is well known. The year was 1843, it was the idea of this fellow…


… who lived here in Hampstead…






… and it looked like this…


 

The card was the work of John Calcott Horsley, rector and treasurer of the Royal Academy, painter of historical scenes and illustrator.

A handy cartoonist, too, if his Christmas card is anything to go by.


In the 1880s he became a subject of the cartoonist's satirical pen when he opposed the modish French practise of painting nude life models.

Punch magazine dubbed him "Mr J. C(lothes) Horsley" and presented him thus…




1,000 cards were produced and sold at a shilling apiece (!). They were published by Joseph Cundall at 12 Bond Street.












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