The wanted Scenery
Hogarth, William (1697 London 1764). The Industrious Prentice a Favourite, and entrusted by his Master. Mr. West with Goodchild, the future son-in-law, at the ledger while newly arrived bales of cloth are brought in. In the background several women work at the looms. Engraving by Thomas Cook (c. 1744 – London 1818). Inscribed: Designed by Wm. Hogarth / Plate 4 / Engraved by T. Cook / Published by T. Cook Islington, and G. G. & J. Robinsons Pater-noster Row December 1st. 1795. 11½ × 14½ in (29.1 × 36.8 cm).
Industry & Idleness IV. – Very fine impression of this famous sujet on buff paper. In its downright luxuriously 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).
“ Here now they both stand in the office, Mr. West, the master, and Goodchild, the trusty servant, who has been faithful over a few things, and will now be made the ruler over many things. All this surely expressed with great and pleasant clearness. West’s face, figure and position have something quite noble, and what is worth more than all this, something very good. His left arm, leaned gently on Goodchild’s shoulder, as symbol of not just trust, but also of intimacy which is not wasted that easily and thank God! does not run about the world as often as embrace and brotherly kiss ”
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. 8,615 / EUR 432. / export price EUR 410. (c. US$ 499.) + 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 4 / Publish’d according to Act of Parliament Sep. 30. 1747. 10½ × 13¾ in (26.7 × 35 cm).
Illustration Hogarth Catalogue Zurich, 1983, 56. – Quite palish impression on wide-margined buff paper.
Offer no. 8,616 / EUR 176. (c. US$ 214.) + shipping
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(Mr. J. R. L., June 11, 2004)