Hogarth, William (1697 London 1764). The Idle ‘Prentice Executed at Tyburn. Found guilty of murder the former weaver’s apprentice Tom Idle is brought to the gallows. Behind the sheriff’s guard equipped with pikes. An itinerant preacher of the Methodists offers the last comfort, the last support he finds in his coffin. Otherwise rich fair scenery with the people enjoying themselves and drinking brandy. Engraving by Thomas Cook (c. 1744 – London 1818). Inscribed: Design’d by W. Hogarth. / Plate 11. / Engraved by T. Cook. / Published by T. Cook No. 11 Little Britain & G. G. I. Robinson No. 25 Pater-noster Row July 1st. 1795. 11¼ × 16⅝ in (28.5 × 42.3 cm).
Industry & Idleness XI. – Very fine impression on buff paper. In its wide white margin a few weak foxing spots and upper right slight tidemark. Beyond that – contrary to all later Hogarth editions – in the original size. – Cook “made his mark as Hogarth engraver, too” (Thieme-Becker).
“ The hangman already waits, merrily smoking his pipe … and a Methodist with Westley’s (Wesley’s) comfort book gives hell to the poor one as far as possible … But what a gallows festival we see there … ”
(caption of a lithograph).
The permanent gallows at Tyburn by the way has its counterpart in a tripod above Dr. Pillule’s – Dr. Misaubin’s – mummies cabinet as altogether announcers of the coming mischief for Earl Squanderfield sitting in front of them in The Visit to the Quack Doctor from Marriage à la Mode. Just as regardless of the coffin at his back Tom Idle is determined to the welfare of the anatomy, but not to the silence of the grave like his colleague Tom Nero from Four Stages of Cruelty. The two skeletons of the marginal emblems already refer to this.
At the right side of the picture finally the gingerbread seller Tiddy-Doll Ford from Mayfair (d. 1752) as “a lasting memorial”, whom 1806, after the battle of Austerlitz, James Gillray took up as Napoleon baking gingerbread kings (see Gillray Catalogue Hanover 1986, no. 159 + colour ills. p. 170).
The master’s famous, most popular suite, showing by example of two apprentices in a weaving mill as one of the main branches of industry in his days the chances of their life as well as the temptations detrimental to their career :
Calculated for the use & Instruction of youth
w(h)erein every thing necessary to be known was to be made
as intelligible as possible
(Hogarth in his Autobiographical Notes).
“ The scenes should be as easily intelligible as possible for which the engravings had not to be worked in all fineness. It was rather important to keep costs low so that even apprentices could buy these sheets. Hogarth designed a frame-like border around each picture – supposedly he assumed that the boys would pin up these engravings directly at the wall. In this border below every scene he had added a characteristic verse from the Bible to the idle and (or) industrious apprentice … at top on the one hand a cat-o-’nine-tails, a pair of fetters, and a halter as emblems of the tragic end of the idle apprentice and on the other hand golden chain, sword and mace as hints to the career of the industrious one ”
(Bachofen-Moser, William Hogarth in the Art Gallery Zurich, 1983, p. 98).
Offer no. 7,537 / EUR 424. / export price EUR 403. (c. US$ 461.) + shipping
– – – The same in Hogarth’s own etching in an 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 , 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”]). Inscribed: Design’d & Engrav’d by Wm. Hogarth / Plate 11 / Publish’d according to Act of Parliamt. Sep. 30. 1747. 10⅞ × 15⅞ in (27.5 × 40.4 cm).
Illustration Hogarth Catalogue Zurich, 1983, 63. – On wide-margined buff paper.
Offer no. 7,711 / EUR 176. (c. US$ 201.) + shipping
– – – The same in Cook’s smaller repetition, but without verse and marginal emblems and with the series title as caption. Inscribed: Pl. XI. / Hogarth pinxt. / T. Cook sculpt. / Published by Longman, Hurst, Rees, & Orme, March 1st. 1809. Subject size 4⅞ × 7⅜ in (12.5 × 18.8 cm). – Trimmed within the wide white platemark.
Offer no. 8,889 / EUR 91. (c. US$ 104.) + shipping
– – – The same in engraving by Ernst Ludwig Riepenhausen (1765 Göttingen 1840, university engraver there). Inscribed: 37. / W. Hogarth inv. pinx. / Pl. 11. / R. d. & sc. 9½ × 14¼ in (24 × 36.2 cm). – Early toned impression. – Riepenhausen’s engravings after Hogarth (“very estimable”, Nagler) belong to his chief work and are partly even preferred to Hogarth’s own engravings.
Offer no. 7,712 / EUR 189. (c. US$ 216.) + shipping
– – – The same by Riepenhausen as before, but on slightly toned minor paper.
Offer no. 7,713 / EUR 146. (c. US$ 167.) + shipping
– – – The same by Riepenhausen as before, but on especially buff paper, supposedly about 1850. – Trimmed to the left platemark.
Offer no. 7,714 / EUR 176. (c. US$ 201.) + shipping
– – – The same in lithography by C. C. Böhme. (1833/36.) Inscribed: 41. / C. C. Böhme lithogr. 9½ × 12¾ in (24 × 32.5 cm). – On slightly toned paper. – Title – Faulhans wird in Tyburn gehängt – and extensive caption à la Lichtenberg in German.
Offer no. 7,715 / EUR 146. (c. US$ 167.) + shipping
– – – The same in steel engraving about 1840. 4¾ × 5¼ in (12 × 13.2 cm). – With title in German + English, but without verse and marginal emblems.
Offer no. 7,716 / EUR 40. (c. US$ 46.) + shipping
„ die (Ridinger-)Graphiken (Th. 9-12 per 28.885) sind unversehrt … angekommen, herzlichen Dank. Es sind wundervolle Arbeiten, wir sind sehr begeistert … “
(Herr R. G., 30. Dezember 2009)