Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Kip, Johannes

KIP, JOHANNES (1653–1722), draughtsman and engraver, born at Amsterdam in 1653, was married there in 1680 (contract on 5 April) to Elizabeth Breda of Amsterdam (Oud-Holland, iii. 77). He was employed in Amsterdam as an engraver, at first of book illustrations (cf. plate of ‘The Siege of Groningen,’ etched in 1672). In 1685 he etched a large view of Amsterdam, and in 1686 a long procession of William III and his wife, Mary of England, outside the Hague. Shortly afterwards Kip appears to have come to London, where he settled in Westminster. He was employed by the booksellers in engraving portraits, such as that of Marcellus Malpighi, M.D., prefixed to an edition of his works in 1697; frontispieces, such as that of an edition of ‘Bibliotheca Patrum,’ in 1693; book illustrations, such as plates of birds after Barlow, or separate prints, such as one of a new water-engine in the manner of J. Van der Heyden, a view of the Danish Church in London after C. G. Cibber, a view of the German Chapel, St. James's, a design for a fountain as a monument to the Duke of Marlborough, after Claude David, and a view of Bridge Town in Barbadoes in 1695. Kip's most important work, however, was the series of etchings done by him from the drawings of Leonard Knyff [q. v.], and published in London by David Mortier of Amsterdam. The first volume appears to have been published in 1708, with a title-page ‘Britannia Illustrata, or Views of several of the Queen's Palaces, as also of the principal Seats of the Nobility and Gentry of Great Britain, curiously engraven on 80 copper-plates,’ dated 1707, and a second title-page in French, commencing ‘Nouveau Théâtre de la Grande Bretagne,’ &c., dated 1708. This volume consists of a series of bird's-eye views drawn by L. Knyff and etched by Kip. Three other volumes followed in 1709 and subsequent years. The second volume consisted of similar bird's-eye views, drawn as well as etched by Kip; and subsequent volumes contained the works of other artists. A supplement contains the twenty-five views of Audley End engraved by Henry Winstanley in 1676. A later edition was published with a few additions by Joseph Smith in 1724–8. Though of little artistic merit this series of engravings is of the greatest archæological interest. Copies of the work are frequently made up from the various editions. In 1710 Kip published a ‘Prospect of the City of London, Westminster, and St. James's Park,’ drawn by himself from Buckingham House, and engraved by himself on twelve sheets; a second edition of this was printed on eight sheets in 1726. From a view of St. Clement Danes Church we learn that Kip resided and sold prints in St. John's Street, near Storyes Back Gate in Westminster. He died in Westminster in April 1722, leaving a daughter, who was also an ingenious artist.

[Vertue's MSS. (Brit. Mus. Add. MS. 23069); Dodd's manuscript Hist. of English Engravers (ib. 33402); Immerzeel's Levens en Werken der Hollandsche Konstschilders, &c., and Kramm's supplement to the same; Lowndes's Bibl. Man.; Brunet's Manuel du Libraire.]

L. C.