Auckland’s site has always been its best feature. Its fertile soils, temperate climate and twin harbours attracted relatively dense Māori settlement – attributes which also explained its appeal to European settlers. Arcadian imagery dominated pictorial views of colonial Auckland. This 1877 painting by Alfred Sharpe shows Auckland set in a lush pastoral landscape – the city itself is barely visible.
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Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.