The Battle of Culloden (1746 (Reprinted 1797))
About this artwork
At the Battle of Culloden, the Jacobite supporters were led by Prince Charles Edward Stuart and the government troops were led by the Duke of Cumberland. The government’s victory effectively brought the 1745 Jacobite Rising to an end and resulted in a repression of Highland culture as punishment. This print was published by Laurie and Whittle in 1797, fifty years from when the original etching was made, highlighting the continued strength of feeling about the Jacobites. It shows the scene from the British perspective, with the British army standing in rank and file – a stark contrast to the disarray of the Highlanders. The Duke is the figure on the white horse in the centre of the composition, a powerful focal point against the billowing smoke of the background.
Augustin Heckel was a German artist active during the eighteenth century.
Sullivan’s drawing abilities were identified at a young age and he was quickly apprenticed to the engraver, Thomas Major. His earliest signed engraving is a depiction of the Battle of Culloden, after Augustin Heckel’s drawing, dated 1746. During the 1750s Sullivan was linked to William Hogarth, engraving several of his works. From 1764-70 Sullivan exhibited miniatures and watercolours at the Society of Artists and in 1765 he was elected to the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers, and Commerce.