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“ To  Nature  and  your  Self  appeal ,

Nor  learn  of  others , what  to  feel ”

Hogarth, William (1697 London 1764). The Time Smoking a Picture (As Statues moulder into Worth). Saturn as winged death heartily smoking at a painting to give it the major orders, cutting it with his scythe at the same time. Engraving. 10⅜ × 7¼ in (24.6 × 18.3 cm).

William Hogarth, Time Smoking a Picture

With distich. – Originally intended as subscription ticket for Sigismunda, Hogarth aims at both the so-called connoisseurs as the “mean trading with antiques”:

“ The honourable Saturn gives the higher merit to a painting by heartily smoking tobacco at it to bring forth those valuable tender inks which create the higher worth. Art collectors may imitate him and hang newer paintings, like ham, under the chimney hood. … To bestow the soot of the smoke furthermore with a more shining ink a pot with the inscription: Varnish stands besides. The broken off hand of an antique torso points at it as a necessary requirement to raise the artificial value of the tender or rather smoky inks by shine ”

(Lichtenberg).

Impression from the plate retouched by the royal engraver James Heath (1757 London 1834) about 1822 (“Even these impressions have become relatively rare today though”, Art Gallery Esslingen 1970; and Meyers Konv.-Lex., 4th ed., VIII [1888], 625: “A fine edition”, esteemed also already by contemporary collectors of the rank of for instance an A. T. Stewart [Catalog of the Stewart Collection, New York 1887, 1221, “fine plates”]) on buff paper. – At top with 2-4 mm white paper margin in addition to the platemark, laterally with extreme, below with fine wide margins.

Offer no. 15,385 / EUR  98. (c. US$ 118.) + shipping

William Hogarth, The Time Smoking a Picture (Cook small)

– – – The same in engraving by Thomas Cook (c. 1744 – London 1818). Inscribed: Hogarth pinxt. / T. Cook sculpt. / Published by Longman, Hurst, Rees, & Orme, March 1st. 1809. Subject size 6⅝ × 5½ in (16.8 × 14 cm).

Cook “made his mark as Hogarth engraver, too, whose complete work he has engraved in copy” (Thieme-Becker) and whose original format he maintained contrary to all later Hogarth editions in his first, earlier edition. For some sheets not published by Hogarth himself Cook became their first engraver, just as he also gained approval of a contemporary connoisseur as Maximilian Speck von Sternburg. Present here, however, in his popular second, smaller version. – Trimmed within the broad white platemark.

Offer no. 15,387 / EUR  69. (c. US$ 83.) + shipping

William Hogarth, The Time Smoking a Picture (Riepenhausen)

– – – The same in engraving by Ernst Ludwig Riepenhausen (1765 Göttingen 1840). Inscribed: 73. / W. Hogarth inv. / R. sc. 9⅞ × 7⅛ in (25.2 × 18.2 cm). – Very fine early impression of almost the original size.

Offer no. 15,382 / EUR  148. (c. US$ 178.) + shipping

– – – The same by Riepenhausen in an impression on slightly toned minor paper. – Small paper scrape off in the lateral plate margin repaired.

Offer no. 15,384 / EUR  89. (c. US$ 107.) + shipping

William Hogarth, The Time Smoking a Picture (Riepenhausen)

– – – The same by Riepenhausen in an impression on especially strong paper of about 1850. – The wide white margin partially somewhat stained.

Offer no. 15,383 / EUR  118. (c. US$ 142.) + shipping

William Hogarth, The Time Smoking a Picture (lithograph)

– – – The same in lithograph by C. F. Heintz. (1833-36.) Inscribed: 52. / Lith. v. C. F. Heintz … / (“Der Zeitgott raucht ein Gemälde an!”). 11½ × 6½ in (29.1 × 16.4 cm). – Without the distich in the free field, but with comprehensive caption in German.

Offer no. 15,386 / EUR  89. (c. US$ 107.) + shipping

– – – The same in steel engraving. C. 1840. Inscribed: Die Zeit beräuchert ein Gemälde. / Time Smoking A Picture. 7¼ × 5½ in (18.5 × 14 cm). – On the right trimmed on the outer borderline.

Offer no. 7,800 / EUR  29. (c. US$ 35.) + shipping


“ Just received the James Figg item safely today. I have a couple questions. Art in general is new to me so I‘m asking you to educate me on this item … First of all I‘m happy with the item, just trying to understand it better … Thanks again ”

(Mr. A. C., March 27, 2008)