William Angus

A Balloon Prospect from above the Clouds.
A Balloon Prospect from above the Clouds, engraved by William Angus. From Thomas Baldwin, “Airopaidia : Containing the Narrative of a Balloon Excursion from Chester”. Chester, 1786. © Department of Special Collections, Memorial Library, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

ANGUS, William (1752?-1821) — London

Engraver and painter. Aquatinted A balloon prospect from above the clouds [over Chester] for Thomas Baldwin, “Airopaidia : containing the narrative of a balloon excursion from Chester, the eighth of September, 1785” 1786; a title-page from a design by Thomas Stothard for the “Royal engagement pocket atlas” 1819. Best known as a landscape and historical engraver, especially for his “The seats of the nobility and gentry in Great Britain and Wales in a collection of select views” 1787-1815. Also known for portraits, etc.

Born in or about 1752, Angus is reported to have been the son of Titus Angus and his wife Rebecca Whittaker, who had married in 1750 and certainly had a son called William. The William Angus baptised at St. Martin in the Fields 9 Dec 1753, son of John and Isabella Angus, is another possibility. He was a pupil of William Walker (see BME 2011). He married Ann Bennett King at St. Dunstan in the East 17 Jan 1784. His own collection of prints was sold by auction in October 1820. He died at Islington 12 Oct 1821, after two years of “painful illness” at the age of sixty-nine and was buried at St. John Clerkenwell 20 Oct 1821, leaving a widow, but had no children. Probate was granted on his will (PROB 11/1654/281) 15 Mar 1822. A brief obituary in The Gentleman’s Magazine noted that “in his better days Mr Angus was justly considered very eminent in his art, and had his full share of employment … unfortunately he made little provision for the latter period of his life; and when his powers in a great degree failed him, yet wholly dependent on his own exertions, he had the mortification to find himself supplanted by younger artists. One of his pupils has far surpassed his master; we allude to Mr W. B. Cooke”.

Parish of St. James Clerkenwell — 1784
4 Gwynn’s Buildings, Clerkenwell — 1787-1815
Goswell Road — 1799
14 Gwynn’s Buildings, Clerkenwell — 1805
Rawstorne Street — 1821

Apprentices: John Smith (£52.10s) 1791; William Bernard Cooke (£63) 1793 (see BME 2011).

Adams. Alexander. Benedikz. BM. Bryan. Grant. Hake. NA.

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