A balloon in a rural landscape, with river and horsemen, late 18th century.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Painted lid of a wooden rectangular snuff box. Public balloon ascents began to be held in pleasure gardens after the first succesful balloon trips in Paris during 1783. These events attracted huge crowds and led to an explosion of ballooniana, or balloon art, expresed in paintings, prints and decorated ceramics as well as many other forms.