'Rome, St Peter's from the Piazza', 1840.
© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Rome, St Peter's from the Piazza', 1840. Daguerreotype by Lorenzo Suscipi. One of a series of topographical and architectural views which are among the earliest known photographs of Italy. Alexander J Ellis (1814-1890) wanted to use them as the basis of a series of engravings in a proposed publication called 'Italy Daguerreotyped'. The daguerreotype proces was one of two pioneering photographic proceses announced in 1839. Each image is a direct positive produced on sensitised metal plates in a long and complex procedure.