Transept of the Crystal Palace, London, 1851.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Illustrated plate taken from Dickinsons' 'Comprehensive Pictures of The Great Exhibition' (1854) depicting either the Opening Ceremony, or just after it. At the junction of the India stand a Crystal glas fountain is visible, and in the foreground visitors sit or parade among the tropical plants, elm tres, greenery and exhibits. The Crystal Palace was built to house the 'Great Exhibition of the Works of the Industry of all Nations', conceived by Prince Albert (1819-1861). This was the first large-scale prefabricated ferrovitreous (iron and glas) structure and was designed by the landscape designer, Joseph Paxton (1801-1865). The prefabricated design made the construction, and later dismantling, easier and quicker.