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BANK NOTE FORGERY.. Report of the Committee of the Society of Arts, &c, Together with the Approved Communications and Evidence upon the same, Relative to the Mode of Preventing the Forgery of Bank Notes. Printed by Order of the Society.1819

London: Sold by the Housekeeper, at the Society's House in the Adelphi, First edition, 8vo (245 x 155 mm), [4], 59, [1], 57*-59*, [1], [61]-72pp., with half-title, 6 plates (one folding), marbled end-papers, half-calf by Zaehnsdorf, marbled boards, a nice copy. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, bank notes ceased to be printed from copperplate and were instead printed from steel engraved plates, but this transition was opposed by T. C. Hansard, the son of the printer to the House of Commons, Luke Hansard. In 1819 the Society of Arts decided to turn their attention to the forging of Bank of England notes and Thomas C. Hansard was one of the members of the Society who put forward a submission that centred on the proposition that the greater the diversity of skills required to produce a note, there the less likelihood there is of it being forged. The engravers would be required to provide a border of exquisite design and workmanship which would be placed around a square in the centre of the note. the report from the Society, whilst supporting Hansard's design, also strongly supported the use of fine vignettes executed by a good historical engraver. However the Bank decided to continue with their current designs, and did so for well over one hundred years. It seem that all the effort of the men from the Society of Arts, Manufacturing, and Commerce could do nothing to sway the bureaucrats, and the forgeries continued. Bridson & Wakeman B48; Goldsmiths'-Kress no. 22503; Levis, p.468.

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