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The great Scottish author, Sir Walter Scott was bankrupt in 1826. His publisher, Robert Cadell, determined to rescue him by issuing a new edition of Scott’s complete poetical and prose works in forty volumes. He further insured financial success by engaging the famous Turner as the sole illustrator to the work.
Turner’s first collaboration with Scott in 1818 had not gone well. A financial disagreement had led Scott to remark: “Turner’s palm is as itchy as his fingers are ingenious, and he will, take my word for it, do nothing without cash and anything for it.” Regardless, Turner provided 64 fine watercolors to be engraved in the new edition.