Blake in the Marketplace, 2013

Robert N. Essick has been collecting and writing about Blake for over forty years.

After two hectic years, Blake collectors deserved a respite. It was not to be. January brought to auction Two Visionary Figures (illus. 10) on a leaf from the Smaller Blake-Varley Sketchbook and, for the second time in seven years, The Gambols of Ghosts According with Their Affections Previous to the Final Judgement (illus. 7), one of Blake’s watercolor illustrations to Robert Blair’s The Grave. The estimate range for Gambols was considerably lower than in 2006, when bidders failed to exceed the reserve price. Sotheby’s New York succeeded this time at the top estimate of $600,000 ($722,500 inclusive of the buyer’s premium charged by the auction house).

In my 2012 sales review I mentioned Arthur Vershbow’s death and the pending auctions of the wide-ranging collection he and his wife, Charlotte, assembled over many years, including posthumous copy p of Songs of Innocence and of Experience, containing 42 plates, and two drawings by Blake, Colinet and Thenot, with Shepherds’ Crooks and The Waking of Leonora (illus. 3-6, 11). The illuminated book and the illustration to Gottfried Augustus Bürger’s Lenore were offered on 9 April by Christie’s New York. The last posthumous copy of the Songs sold at auction was in 1981, when it fetched $15,000 (copy h, 57 impressions of 54 plates; see Blake 15.1 [summer 1981]: 59-60 and 16.2 [fall 1982]: 87). More recently, single impressions have changed hands at about the same price. Some plates in the Vershbow copy were unevenly inked and printed. The Waking of Leonora had serious condition issues. For these reasons, when I learned in mid-January of Christie’s estimates, I thought that they were optimistic, but was quickly disabused of that notion when the scruffy doodle from the Blake-Varley Sketchbook made its high estimate of $18,000 ($22,500 with the buyer’s premium).

I did not attend this first Vershbow auction but watched it on Christie’s webcam. Bidding on the Songs seemed lackluster but managed to achieve a hammer price at the low estimate of $100,000 ($123,750 with the buyer’s premium).Beginning 11 March 2013, Christie’s charged the buyer 25% on amounts up to $75,000, 20% on amounts thereafter to $1.5 million, and 12% on amounts above $1.5 million. Beginning 15 March 2013, Sotheby’s charged 25% on amounts up to $1 million, 20% between $1 and $2 million, and 12% thereafter. Two bidders quickly drove the Leonora watercolor well past the high estimate of $80,000. The work sold for a hammer price of $170,000 ($207,750 with the premium). I have not been able to discover the purchaser of either lot, but both were knocked down to Felix de Marez Oyens, an “international consultant” for Christie’s, probably acting for a private collector or collectors. John Windle suggests that the purchaser of the watercolor may have been a German collector because of the importance of Bürger’s poem to the literary history of that nation.Lenore, first published in 1774, quickly became famous and immensely influential. It was translated into all the major European languages under several variant titles, including Leonora, Leonore, and Ellenore.

It was not until 29 October that Christie’s offered Colinet and Thenot (illus. 6), a preliminary drawing for one of Blake’s Virgil wood engravings, and other works by Blake from the Vershbow collection. Blake’s illustrations for Ambrose Philips’s “imitation” of Virgil’s first eclogue are among the most important and influential in the history of British wood engraving. A Virgil drawing (Butlin #769.19) sold at auction in 1992 for $79,750, including the buyer’s premium; two in one lot (Butlin #769.2, 13) fetched £71,900 in 1997. I had expected bidding for the Vershbow example, Butlin #769.3, to race through the $40,000-$60,000 estimate. Thus I was pleasantly surprised when the drawing was acquired by Windle, bidding on my behalf, at $32,000 ($40,000 with the premium).

In 1785 Blake exhibited at the Royal Academy a group of three watercolors illustrating the biblical account of Joseph and his brothers (Butlin #155-57, Fitzwilliam Museum). His career as an original artist seemed to be well underway at that time along stylistic lines established by the neoclassicism of Benjamin West and James Barry. A large (for Blake) and vigorous preliminary watercolor for one of the exhibited works, Joseph Ordering Simeon to Be Bound, came to market at Sotheby’s London on 3 July with an estimate of £20,000-30,000 (illus. 8). John Windle, acting for me, appears to have been the only bidder. The drawing was quickly sold at £22,000 (£27,500 including the buyer’s premium). Condition issues may have dissuaded some collectors, yet the problems in this instance were less severe than with the Leonora watercolor. The sales of these two works within a dozen weeks of each other demonstrate how difficult it is to predict the outcome of auctions. The falling prices for Blake’s Virgil drawings—almost a 50% discount between 1992 and 2013—deepen the uncertainties.

Two recto/verso plates from The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, untraced since 1938, turned up in early November—see the first entry under Illuminated Books, below, and illus. 1-2.

The Blake materials collected by Maurice Sendak remain in his estate.See Blake 46.4 (spring 2013): par. 5. In the list of works in Sendak’s collection I failed to include the clippings from Jerusalem pls. 18/19 and 28/35 (see BBS 87). I had expected that his collection would go to the Rosenbach Museum and Library, Philadelphia, but that may be true only for books. The Blakes, or at least some of them, might come to market in the next few years.

Online catalogues continue to surprise with rare prints by and after Blake—see “Zephyrus and Flora” under Separate Plates and the Blair (pl. 4 proof, illus. 15), Bonnycastle, Earle, Hogarth (Quaritch printing), and Wollstonecraft, Marie et Caroline, entries under Letterpress Books with Engravings by and after Blake. While not among Blake’s major achievements, such works help document his career and early reputation. They also provide opportunities for collectors priced out of the market for Blake’s drawings and original graphics. Searching the Internet daily can be tiresome but occasionally rewarding.

The section of these marketplace reports devoted to Blake’s Circle and Followers is once again threatening to overwhelm the artist/poet himself. Beginning with this sales review, I will no longer list separate plates and book illustrations for Blake’s circle and followers unless executed by the original artist. Exceptions will be made for particularly important or rare works, such as large separate plates designed by Fuseli, discoveries, and plates by artists, such as Basire, of interest principally for their copy engravings. The coverage of Blake and Interesting Blakeana will remain unchanged.

The year of all sales and catalogues in the following lists is 2013 unless indicated otherwise. Most reports about auction catalogues are based on the online versions. Coverage of regional auctions is selective. Dates for dealers’ online catalogues are the dates accessed, not the dates of publication. Works offered online by dealers and previously listed in any one of the last three sales reviews are not repeated here. Most of the auction houses add their purchaser’s surcharge to the hammer price in their price lists. These net amounts are given here, following the official price lists. The value-added tax levied against the buyer’s surcharge in Britain is not included. Late 2013 sales will be covered in the 2014 review. I am grateful for help in compiling this review to G. E. Bentley, Jr., Nancy Bialler, David Bindman, Robert Brandeis, Mark Crosby, Harriet Drummond, Mark Griffith-Jones, Gretchen Hause, Richard Lloyd, Nicholas Lott, Constance McPhee, Alan Parker, William Pressly, Lucy Rosenburgh, Joseph Viscomi, Francis Wahlgren, and John Windle. My special thanks go to Alexander Gourlay for his generosity in keeping me abreast of Internet auctions and catalogues and for help with high-resolution imaging and identifying Blake’s handwriting. Once again, John Sullivan’s digital imaging and Sarah Jones’s editorial expertise have been invaluable.

Abbreviations

AH Abbott and Holder, London
BB G. E. Bentley, Jr., Blake Books (Oxford: Clarendon P, 1977). Plate numbers and copy designations for Blake’s illuminated books and commercial book illustrations follow BB.
BBS G. E. Bentley, Jr., Blake Books Supplement (Oxford: Clarendon P, 1995)
Bennett Shelley M. Bennett, Thomas Stothard: The Mechanisms of Art Patronage in England circa 1800 (Columbia: U of Missouri P, 1988)
BG Bloomsbury auctions, Godalming
BHL Bonhams auctions, London
BHO Bonhams auctions, Oxford
BL Bloomsbury auctions, London
BR(2) G. E. Bentley, Jr., Blake Records, 2nd ed. (New Haven: Yale UP, 2004)
Butlin Martin Butlin, The Paintings and Drawings of William Blake, 2 vols. (New Haven: Yale UP, 1981)
cat(s). catalogue(s)
CB Robert N. Essick, William Blake’s Commercial Book Illustrations (Oxford: Clarendon P, 1991)
CL Christie’s auctions, London
CNY Christie’s auctions, New York
Coxhead A. C. Coxhead, Thomas Stothard, R.A. (London: Bullen, 1906)
CSK Christie’s auctions, South Kensington
DW Dominic Winter auctions, South Cerney, Gloucestershire
E The Complete Poetry and Prose of William Blake, ed. David V. Erdman, newly rev. ed. (New York: Anchor–Random House, 1988)
EB eBay online auctions
GP Grosvenor Prints, London
illus. illustration(s), illustrated
PBA PBA Galleries auctions, San Francisco
pl(s). plate(s)
SL Sotheby’s auctions, London
SNY Sotheby’s auctions, New York
SP Robert N. Essick, The Separate Plates of William Blake: A Catalogue (Princeton: Princeton UP, 1983)
st(s). state(s) of an engraving, etching, or lithograph
Swann Swann auctions, New York
# auction lot or catalogue item number

Illuminated Books

The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, pls. 5-6 printed recto/verso. Sold by private treaty in Nov. by Commonwealth Books, Boston, to John Windle acting for Essick. See illus. 1-2.

1. The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, pl. 5 (see enlargement), printed in reddish-brown ink with pl. 6 in red ink on the verso (illus. 2). Relief etching with white-line work and blue watercolor in the design above the text, platemark 15.0 x 10.7 cm. Wove paper without watermark, leaf 16.0 x 11.7 cm. Both pls. probably printed c. 1790. Blake also used ink colors very similar to the reddish-brown of pl. 5 for 14 pls. in copy B of The Marriage, also printed c. 1790. Mounted in a window cut in a leaf of wove paper without watermark, 31.2 x 23.8 cm. and numbered “90” (not shown) in pen and brown ink top right. A framing line is inscribed in brown ink on the mount very close to the edges of the window. This is very probably the mount into which the leaf bearing pls. 5 and 6 was inlaid and the mount in turn bound “about 1853” (BB 337) by George A. Smith with the “Order” of the Songs of Innocence and of Experience and many other prints from Blake’s illuminated books. The number top right probably represents the position of this leaf within the album. These impressions were formerly untraced since their sale at auction in 1938; see BB 287, 301, 338 #54, 341 #M1-2. Eight stabholes, cut into by the left edge of the mount, measure from the top hole 4.0, 3.8, 1.9, 2.5, 4.7, 5.4, and 4.15 cm. apart. A second set of 18 much smaller holes is about 3 mm. within the left edge of the mount; these are all about 1.5 cm. apart. The mount inscribed in pencil below the print, “from Marriage of Heaven & Hell page 5”; the verso inscribed in the same position by the same hand “Heaven & Hell page 6.” Essick collection. Click to show more.

A label associated with these Marriage pls., probably once pasted to the back of a former mat or frame, bears a pen and ink inscription: “Purchased for John J. Slocum / by Dr. Jacob Schwartz / at the [George C.] Smith Sale, Nov. 2, 1938, [#36] / for $45.00., at Park[e] Bernet galleries / J. J. S. attended Sale with his / Aunt Olivia & Uncle Sherman Flint.” The price recorded on this label apparently includes a $5 fee for Schwartz, since the lot sold for $40.
Provenance: As in BB to 1938; acquired at the Smith auction by the dealer Jacob Schwartz acting for the American diplomat and James Joyce bibliographer John J. Slocum (1914-97); by inheritance in 1997 to the person who brought the work, framed and double glazed, to Commonwealth Books, Boston, in Oct.; on consignment with Commonwealth Books, Nov. (not priced); sold Nov. to John Windle acting for Essick.

A lightly inked outline curves right of the horse in the design above the text and loops just above the final word in line 1 (“theirs”). A similar shadowy line, even more lightly printed, can be seen above and to the left of the falling figure. This is the escarpment of a plateau created by step etching. After an initial etch, Blake covered the design with acid resist, then etched the uncovered areas to a slightly greater depth. The inking ball caught the edge of the plateau and deposited a little ink. The smudged appearance of these lines suggests that Blake attempted to wipe them clean of ink but did not completely succeed. A similar effort may have extended to the areas between the man’s legs and below the horse’s muzzle, leaving behind a slight brown tone. There is no evidence of the edge of a step between the design and the text; the application of acid resist may have extended over both. If so, then only the large blank areas upper right and left would have been exposed to a second treatment with acid. The ink ball would not have been supported by relief surfaces in these portions of the copperplate; it makes sense to etch them more deeply to prevent foul inking. Some ink also adhered to and printed from the etching dike, particularly along the lower left and right margins. Blake may have cleaned most of the ink from the top and bottom etching dikes, although parts of their inner edges can still be seen. The serpent above the 3rd line of text from the end does not show the white-line stippling, deployed to indicate scales, clearly visible in copy B of The Marriage. I suspect that the white-line work was present on the copperplate when this impression was pulled but that it was obscured by heavy inking and printing. This would also appear to be the case with pl. 5 in copy C. The platemark, more prominent than in the vast majority of Blake’s relief etchings, also indicates that this example was printed with greater pressure than usual. The blue coloring used to indicate sky in the design seems unimpressive at first sight, but the tinting on the falling figure was applied with some care, perhaps as an undertone in anticipation of subsequent applications of rose and pink. Blake used such combinations of colors to represent flesh in his watercolors. I hesitate, however, to attribute the washes to either Blake or his wife, Catherine. Click to show less.

2. The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, pl. 6, printed in red ink with pl. 5 on the recto (illus. 1). Relief etching, probably printed c. 1790. The platemark is 10.1 cm. in width. The edge of the window into which the leaf is inlaid covers the top platemark; BB 68 records a height of 15.1 cm. Text from pl. 5 shows through as a blind embossment on this verso, particularly lower left. Essick collection. See the caption to illus. 1 for further information.

The pl. is poorly printed lower left. Joseph Viscomi suggests that this resulted from an unbalanced roller in Blake’s press. Perhaps this impression and its companion on the recto were trial pulls before Blake had properly adjusted his press. Pl. 6 in copy B of The Marriage shows slightly better, but still weak, printing lower left. Neither Viscomi nor I have been able to find a close match for the red ink of this impression among Blake’s other printings of Marriage pls. datable to c. 1790. The color befits the “Memorable Fancy” beginning on this pl.: “As I was walking among the fires of hell, ….”

Songs of Innocence and of Experience, posthumous copy p. Forty-two pls. (BB pls. 1-14, 16-29, 33-36, 38-43, 46, 49, and 52-53) on 42 leaves of wove paper, 18.7 x 12.9 cm., some showing J Whatman / 1831 and J Whatman / 1832 watermarks. Printed in black ink by Frederick Tatham in 1832 or later. Bound in 19th-century green morocco, quarter morocco folding case. BBS 112, 130. CNY, 9 April, #64, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, “brief autograph description of the book laid in,” illus. ($123,750; estimate $100,000-150,000). I have had no response to a letter of inquiry kindly passed along to the new owner by Francis Wahlgren of Christie’s. See illus. 3-5.

3. Title page to Songs of Innocence and of Experience, posthumous copy p (see enlargement of design). BB pl. 1. Relief etching printed in black ink, image and platemark 11.5 x 7.1 cm., leaf of wove paper 18.7 x 12.9 cm. Printed 1832 or later by Frederick Tatham. Photo courtesy of Christie’s New York. 

This impression is in a previously unrecorded 2nd st. When compared to lifetime impressions, such as the well-inked and uncolored example in copy BB, this posthumous impression shows that work with a tool has cut away some of the relief surfaces left of the upper figure’s left upper arm, above his head (thereby eliminating part of his left hand), and along the lower edge of his left leg and foot. Similar work appears on the lower figure’s left upper arm, above and to the left of her head, and on her left upper leg and foot. A relief patch in the upper outline of her back, just below the man’s right knee, has been almost completely cut away. Some of the relief surface just above the lower left margin may also have been eliminated with a tool, although blotchy inking contributes to the white-line effects in this area. I have found this 2nd st. only in other posthumous copies (e.g., copies b and h); it does not appear in late copies printed by Blake, such as Z and AA of 1826. The 2nd st. alterations may have been made by Blake’s wife, Catherine, or Tatham after Blake’s death.

4. “The Lamb,” Songs of Innocence and of Experience, posthumous copy p. BB pl. 8. Relief etching printed in black ink, image 11.8 x 7.8 cm., platemark 12.3 x 7.8 cm., leaf of wove paper 18.7 x 12.9 cm. Printed 1832 or later by Frederick Tatham. This impression shows weak inking and printing along the right border and the top left corner. Photo courtesy of Christie’s New York.
5. “London,” Songs of Innocence and of Experience, posthumous copy p. BB pl. 46. Relief etching printed in black ink, image and platemark 11.3 x 7.0 cm., leaf of wove paper 18.7 x 12.9 cm. Printed 1832 or later by Frederick Tatham. This impression is reasonably well printed in a grainy ink, but with some foul inking of recessed areas within the cloud of smoke right of the second stanza. Was this style of inking and printing a purposeful attempt to create a smoky effect? A positive answer might be giving too much credit to Tatham. Photo courtesy of Christie’s New York.

Drawings and Paintings

Colinet and Thenot, with Shepherds’ Crooks, Leaning against Trees, a preliminary drawing for Blake’s 4th wood engraving in R. J. Thornton’s ed. of The Pastorals of Virgil, 1821. Monochrome wash drawing, 3.7 x 9.6 cm., datable to c. 1820. Butlin #769.3 (then untraced). CNY, 29 Oct., #790, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, framed, illus. ($40,000 to John Windle acting for Essick). See illus. 6.

6. Colinet and Thenot, with Shepherds’ Crooks, Leaning against Trees, a preliminary drawing for Blake’s 4thwood engraving (BB #504, pl. 8) in R. J. Thornton’s ed. of The Pastorals of Virgil, 1821 (see enlargement). Gray and black ink (possibly over pencil), white and gray wash, 3.7 x 9.6 cm., datable to c. 1820. The strengthening of selected lines in black ink may have been added at a slightly later time than the drawing in gray ink. Butlin #769.3 (then untraced). Essick collection. Click to show more.

This small drawing shows a surprising number of pentimenti. Colinet, the younger shepherd on the left, was originally placed closer to the sheep. He may have been kneeling. The sheep closest to Colinet was sketched further left, his head raised higher. A few lines above the dog suggest foliage, either a tree on a distant hill or branches and leaves descending from the large tree on the left, as in the relief etching of the design. The dog’s head may have been sketched closer to the running shepherd’s right leg. This man’s right arm was first sketched a little lower, his left arm a little higher, and his shepherd’s crook higher and further right. The branch arching above Thenot, the older shepherd on the right, and its leaves above the flock of sheep were originally slightly higher than their bolder execution in black ink. A patch of light gray pigment just below Thenot’s left armpit probably masks some preliminary sketching. Blake then added a few ink lines over the white area to define Thenot’s chest and left upper arm. Thin washes around Colinet’s hands hint at other modifications. The cluster of light brown lines below the running flock may simply be stains similar to the darker brown spots along the design’s lower edge. This drawing is intermediate between Blake’s relief etching of the design and his wood engraving; see Essick, “A Relief Etching of Blake’s Virgil Illustrations,” Blake 25.3 (winter 1991-92): 117-27.

All of Blake’s wood engravings illustrate Ambrose Philips’s “imitation” of Virgil’s first eclogue. In this preliminary drawing, as in the wood engraving, Colinet holds his shepherd’s crook in his left hand and panpipes in his right. Thenot leans against the tree on the right and gestures with his right hand toward a third shepherd, Lightfoot, who runs on the background hill followed by his barking dog. Blake is probably responding to a brief speech by Thenot: “See Lightfoot; he shall tend them [the sheep] close; and I / ‘tween whiles, across the plain will glance mine eyes.—” (1: 14 of Thornton’s ed.). Lightfoot seems to be driving the hillside flock rapidly to the right, but the sheep have their heads turned back toward the left. The marks top center would appear to be fragments from a mostly scraped away inscription in brown ink. Based on extensive analysis using high-resolution images captured with a Celestron digital microscope, Alexander Gourlay has determined that the word is “WOLVES.” The lines illustrated in Philips’s text do not refer to any predators, but a slightly later passage, illustrated by another wood engraving, names both the “fox” and “wolf” as potential threats. If “WOLVES” is a title or caption for the design reproduced here, it provides an explanation for the running dog, man, and sheep: all are fleeing wolves. As Butlin points out, Lightfoot’s posture “recalls the messengers in the Job illustration” coming to tell Job and his wife of the destruction of their possessions, including their “sheep” (Job 1.16). Blake first executed the Job design as a watercolor c. 1805-06 (Butlin #550.4).

Similar brown-ink fragments of different words, probably including “Colinet” on Butlin #769.2 and possibly “Thenot” on Butlin #769.7, appear top center on several other Virgil drawings; see Blake 31.4 (spring 1998): 124, caption to illus. 9. This ink differs from the gray and black inks Blake used in the drawings, and thus these inscriptions are probably not by him. They may have been written by John Linnell, who acquired the drawings no later than 1839. The sharply slanted terminal “S” in the inscription on this drawing is similar to those in the first line of his manuscript draft of an advertisement for Blake’s Job engravings; see the reproduction in Blake 45.4 (spring 2012): 121. I hesitate to speculate about who attempted to delete the inscriptions or why.

Provenance: As in Butlin to 1927; sold 1980 from the collection of Mrs. Matthew Baird to Goodspeed’s Book Shop, Boston; acquired 1980 by Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, Newton Centre, Massachusetts (price not recorded); sold 2013 from the Vershbow estate as recorded above under Drawings and Paintings. Click to show less.

The Gambols of Ghosts According with Their Affections Previous to the Final Judgement. Watercolor, 26.9 x 20.7 cm., datable to 1805. SNY, 30 Jan., #285, illus. ($722,500 to a bidder on the telephone; estimate $400,000-600,000). Previously offered SNY, 2 May 2006, #12, illus. (not sold; highest bid $520,000 on an estimate of $700,000-1,000,000). The dealer Libby Howie, the vendor at the 2006 auction, stated that this work was “no longer available” in April 2008. See illus. 7.

7. The Gambols of Ghosts According with Their Affections Previous to the Final Judgement (see enlargement). Watercolor, 26.9 x 20.7 cm., datable to 1805. One of 19 watercolor illus. to Robert Blair’s The Grave discovered in 2001; see Martin Butlin, “New Risen from the Grave: Nineteen Unknown Watercolors by William Blake,” Blake 35.3 (winter 2001-02): 68-73. Photo courtesy of the William Blake Archive. Click to show more.

This complex design is discussed in William Blake’s Watercolour Inventions in Illustration of The Grave by Robert Blair, ed. Martin Butlin, essay by Morton D. Paley (Lavenham, Suffolk: William Blake Trust, 2009) 56. As Butlin indicates, “At the top of the right-hand side Blake seems to have included a scene of baptism in its most negative form: an horrific old man clutching a very reluctant child as he dips his hand in a bowl of water held by two young figures.” There would appear to be another parodic version of one of the sacraments—or more precisely a prelude to it—at top left. A young man holds a round object, very probably a ring, in his left hand. He grasps a young woman’s left wrist with his right hand and may be about to slip the ring over one of the extended fingers of her left hand. He looks not at his intended but at the approaching patriarchal figure to the right, who points his left index finger at the couple and raises a dagger in his right hand. Is this the girl’s angry father, threatening violence as a way of halting an impending engagement? The girl’s raised right hand, palm facing right, may be a gesture directed at the old rather than the young man. Her open mouth and general expression indicate alarm. The two women below the pair may be pulling them downward and thereby helping their entry into the church where a wedding ceremony can commence. These may be personifications of the desires of lovers caught between fulfillment and restraint.

Nineteen Grave watercolors, including Gambols of Ghosts, were offered at SNY, 2 May 2006. For discussions of this auction, see E. B. Bentley, “Grave Indignities: Greed, Hucksterism, and Oblivion: Blake’s Watercolors for Blair’s Grave,” Blake 40.2 (fall 2006): 66-71, and Essick, “Blake in the Marketplace, 2006,” Blake 40.4 (spring 2007): 116-17, 120-26. All 20 Grave watercolors are available in the William Blake Archive <http://​www.​blakearchive.​org>. Click to show less.

Harpers and Other Drawings (recto), preliminary sketches for America and Europe (verso). Pencil, leaf 20.4 x 24.6 cm. Not in Butlin because not discovered until 2010. Lowell Libson, Jan. cat. of “British Paintings & Works on Paper,” pp. [50]-55, titled Studies for “America: A Prophecy” and an Early Treatment of “Job,” with a detailed discussion of the drawings, recto and verso illus. (not priced). For information on these drawings and illus., see Blake 46.4 (spring 2013): illus. 9-11, and Martin Butlin, “Harpers and Other Drawings: The Case for a Unified Composition,” Blake 47.2 (fall 2013). Still offered on Libson’s web site, early March 2014.

Joseph Ordering Simeon to Be Bound. Pen and watercolor over pencil, 33.8 x 48.3 cm., datable to c. 1785. Butlin #158, then located in a “Private Collection, Milan.” SL, 3 July, #160, illus. (£27,500 to John Windle acting for Essick). See illus. 8-9.

8. Joseph Ordering Simeon to Be Bound (see enlargement). Pen and watercolor over pencil, 33.8 x 48.3 cm., datable to c. 1785. Butlin #158. Laid paper with a fleur de lis watermark near the center of the leaf, chain lines running horizontally 2.9 cm. apart. Although the drawing is pasted on all margins to a backing mat, these features of the paper are discernable in a raking light. The glue used to affix the drawing to the mat has stained the margins of the recto, particularly at the top, upper left side, and on the right. A vertical tear extends 1.0 cm. from the top center margin. The flesh-pink and yellow watercolors are faded. Essick collection. Click to show more.

This drawing is a preliminary for the more finished watercolor (illus. 9) in the Fitzwilliam Museum. The design illustrates events recounted in Genesis 42. Ten of Joseph’s half-brothers have been sent by their father, Jacob, to Egypt to buy corn. Eight brothers are clearly pictured on the left; a 9th is represented only by a few lines delineating head and hair between the upper and lower figures furthest left. Pharaoh has placed Joseph, seated on the throne-like bench or chair in the center of the design, in charge of preparing for the predicted 7 years of dearth. The brothers do not recognize Joseph, but he knows who they are, accuses them of being spies, and places “them all together into ward three days” (Genesis 42.17). His favorite brother, Benjamin, is not among the group that has come to Egypt. After releasing them from prison, Joseph orders one of the visitors, Simeon, to be taken hostage to enforce his demand that Benjamin will be included during their next trip to Egypt. Simeon half kneels on the right while being bound by an Egyptian servant or guard not referred to in Genesis; the brothers on the left respond with surprise and regret at this harsh treatment, the reasons for which they do not understand. Joseph overhears his brethren discussing their guilt over selling him into bondage and “he turned himself about from them, and wept” (Genesis 42.24). Blake pictures this moment in the narrative. Joseph’s turning away from his brothers indicates his complex psychological state, a contradictory mixture of familial attachment, anger at past crimes against him, and awareness of his present powers to punish or forgive. The rhythm of head, eye, and hand positions contributes substantially to the interplay of emotions among the figures expressed by Blake’s design. The prominence of eyes and hands in Blake’s art of the 1780s may be due in part to the necessity for an engraver to concentrate on their coordination.

Butlin notes that there are “a number of pentimenti” in this drawing. The head and upper body of the figure far right were first drawn higher and a little further to the right; the head and shoulder of the brother top left were originally sketched higher in the design. A few very light pencil lines left of Joseph’s upper body suggest that he was first sketched in a more upright posture. Click to show less.

9. Joseph Ordering Simeon to Be Bound (see enlargement). Pen and watercolor over pencil, 40.5 x 56.0 cm., datable to 1785. Butlin #156. Photo courtesy of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge. See illus. 8 for a preliminary design.

Blake exhibited this work and its 2 companions, Joseph’s Brethren Bowing before Him and Joseph Making Himself Known to His Brethren (Butlin #155, 157), at the Royal Academy in 1785. At least one strand of Old Testament narrative treats Jacob’s 12 sons as the progenitors of the 12 tribes of Israel (see 1 Kings 18.31). Thus, the story of Joseph and his brethren can be read as a harbinger of the struggles of the Israelites to be one nation in spite of quarrels among their tribes. Blake may have seen the story as a paradigmatic example of the eternal conflicts between the forces of unification and fragmentation that figure so prominently in his writings. The restoration of psychic and communal harmony through the forgiveness of sin, an important motif in Blake’s later work, is foreshadowed by the final episode of the Joseph story in Genesis 45, illustrated by Blake’s concluding design. For an interesting biographical interpretation of the 3 Joseph designs, see David Bindman, Blake as an Artist (Oxford: Phaidon, 1977) 34-35. Butlin #156 lists the major differences between the preliminary drawing (illus. 8) and this finished watercolor, but does not note the addition of 5 or 6 serpents in the elaborated background of the latter. The 4 most prominent snakes coil around columns and foliage to emblemize the intertwined and potentially harmful family relationships unfolding in the foreground. For further discussion, see Christopher Heppner, Reading Blake’s Designs (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1995) 12-21, 89-92.

Parental Affection, or the Meeting of a Family in Heaven (recto), Sisyphus Rolling the Stone up a Hill (verso). Recto watercolor, verso pencil, leaf 14.3 x 9.2 cm. Not in Butlin because not discovered until 2010. Lowell Libson, Jan. cat. of “British Paintings & Works on Paper,” pp. [44]-49, recto titled The Meeting of a Family in Heaven, with a detailed discussion of the work and its possible Swedenborgian subject, recto and verso illus. (not priced). Reported on Libson’s web site in Sept. to have been sold to a “Private Collection, USA.” For information on these drawings and illus., see Blake 46.4 (spring 2013): illus. 12-14.

St. Matthew. Tempera, 37.2 x 25.7 cm., datable to 1799. Butlin #396, located in a “Private Collection, Milan” (very probably the same collection from which emerged Joseph Ordering Simeon to Be Bound, above). Offered privately in Nov. through Nicholas Lott of Larkhall Fine Art, Bath (price on request).

Two Visionary Figures, Mountains Behind, p. 53 from the Smaller Blake-Varley Sketchbook, verso (p. 54) blank except for scribbled lines. Pencil, leaf 20.7 x 15.5 cm., datable to c. 1819. Butlin #692.53, 54. CNY, 31 Jan., #147, p. 53 titled An Angel, Arms Upraised, with Another Figure, illus. ($22,500 to the E. J. Pratt Library, Victoria University, Toronto; estimate $12,000-18,000). Pratt Library call no. Blake Suppl. no. 426. Previously sold CL, 15 June 1971, #157 (£162.50 to “Pearson” for Anchard Fine Arts Ltd., Stoke d’Abernon, Surrey). See illus. 10.

10. Two Visionary Figures, Mountains Behind, p. 53 from the Smaller Blake-Varley Sketchbook (see enlargement). Pencil, leaf 20.7 x 15.5 cm., datable to c. 1819. Butlin #692.53. Collection of the E. J. Pratt Library, Victoria University, Toronto. Photo courtesy of Christie’s New York. Click to show more.

Christie’s detailed auction cat. entry of 31 Jan., #147, notes an “indistinct inscription in the hand of John Varley ‘Hotspur…’ and further indistinct inscriptions (recto) and with indistinct inscription in the hand of John Varley ‘it is allways [sic] to keep yourself collected’ (verso). … The reference to Hotspur and his [Varley’s] need to keep himself ‘collected’ may refer to a lost drawing on the missing facing page” of the sketchbook. The cat. also provides a description of the design: It is difficult to make out the subject of the present example. What appears to be an angel raises his arms, behind which two wings can be seen, unless indeed they are rising flames or emanations of divine inspiration. The other figure seems to have just approached him with arm outstretched as if to indicate from whence he has come; his head is silhouetted against what seems to be a large halo. Alternatively, this second figure could be female. Behind runs a line of regularly shaped hills or perhaps pyramids. Might the figure on the left, not the one on the right, be female? Note the rounded breasts. The supposed halo is offset to the right; it could be the rising or setting sun. Curving horizontal lines on the right suggest more hills or mountains, irregularly rather than “regularly” shaped. Three horizontal lines above the peaks on the left may be clouds. I am unable to decipher the two vertical lines, with a looping line at their base, left of the leftmost peak. Clusters of lines left of the figures’ feet and between their feet may be the rudimentary beginnings of foreground motifs. The raised arms of the figure on the left recall Satan in several versions of Blake’s illus. of the fallen angel calling up his legions in Paradise Lost (see Butlin #529.1, 536.1, possibly 591), but other motifs make such an identification questionable. The precise subject of the design has not yet been determined.

The condition report provided by Christie’s mentions several problems, including the extensive but light brown staining evident in a color reproduction, “three small areas of old restoration towards the upper edge of the sheet,” some “fading to the pencilwork,” and a water stain lower left. Many of the lines also look rubbed; note particularly the cluster of graphite fragments below the figures’ feet. The brown stains were probably caused by the “acidic mount” to which the drawing has been “taped along the upper edge.” When removed from the sketchbook and sold at CL, 15 June 1971, #157, the leaf was not mounted. Thus, one of its subsequent owners taped it to the harmful mount. Let that be a warning to us all about the care and keeping of works of art. Click to show less.

The Waking of Leonora, Design for the Tailpiece for Bürger’s “Leonora.” Watercolor, 6.7 x 12.9 cm. on leaf 8.2 x 14.0 cm., datable to c. 1796. Butlin #338. CNY, 9 April, #65, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, framed, illus. ($207,750; estimate $60,000-80,000). I have had no response to a letter of inquiry kindly passed along to the new owner by Francis Wahlgren of Christie’s. See illus. 11-12; see also illus. 13-14 for related works.

11. The Waking of Leonora, Design for the Tailpiece for Bürger’s “Leonora.” Watercolor, 6.7 x 12.9 cm. on leaf of wove paper 8.2 x 14.0 cm., datable to c. 1796. See illus. 12 for the inscription lower right. Butlin #338 records the first owner of the watercolor as “Mrs. Dew-Smith by 1912.” Christie’s cat. of 9 April, #65, adds to this provenance the sensible speculation that the drawing passed to her (I suspect by inheritance) from her husband, Albert George Dew-Smith (1848-1903). He owned several works by Blake, including America copy B, acquired in 1874. For information on A. G. Dew-Smith, see Joseph Viscomi, “Two Fake Blakes Revisited; One Dew-Smith Revealed,” Blake in Our Time: Essays in Honour of G. E. Bentley Jr, ed. Karen Mulhallen (Toronto: U of Toronto P, 2010) 35-78. Photo courtesy of Christie’s New York. See also illus. 13, 14 for related works.
12. Top: inscriptions lower right on The Waking of Leonora (illus. 11). Area shown approximately 0.5 x 2.6 cm.

Bottom: The same, manipulated in Adobe Photoshop to increase the visibility of the inscription right of “del” (see enlargement).

Blake first wrote an inscription lower right, “Blake del & sc.,” very lightly in pencil. He appears to have written some version of “& sc.” twice, one above the other. The lower “& sc.” is on roughly the same line as “Blake del” in pencil and thus was probably written along with the first part of the inscription. The characters may have been poorly formed; this would explain the need for writing a more legible version above. The wording of the pencil inscription names Blake as both the delineator (“del,” an abbreviation for “delineavit”) and the engraver (“sc.,” an abbreviation of “sculpsit”) of the design. Blake then wrote “Blake del__” over his pencil inscription in a dark black medium, possibly the same black watercolor or ink used to outline motifs in the design. The letters of “Blake” are offset to the left, and the dash or underscore following “del” runs through the lower “& sc.” inscription. The pencil version indicates that Blake believed that he would be employed to engrave this illus., and probably the two others he designed, for J. T. Stanley’s translation of Bürger’s poem. Having learned that someone else would engrave the illus., he changed the wording to take credit for the design but not its execution as a print. Engravers were generally paid more for their copy work than the original artists of book illus., and thus these layered inscriptions indicate what may have been a financial disappointment for Blake. He was similarly treated in 1805, when R. H. Cromek failed to hire him to engrave the designs for Robert Blair’s The Grave. Photo courtesy of Christie’s New York.

13. Sketch for “The Waking of Leonora” (see enlargement). Pencil, 9.5 x 13.5 cm., leaf of wove paper 14.9 x 23.5 cm., inscribed in pen and ink lower right “Drawn by William / Blake. / vouched by Fred.k Tatham.” Butlin #339. A preliminary drawing for the watercolor (illus. 11). Photo courtesy of the Keynes Collection, Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

The three principal figures are basically the same as in the watercolor and subsequent engraving (illus. 14), but this sketch includes cloudborne figures not retained in the 2 later versions. Five figures descend in an arc above Leonora’s head. Four have their arms, or possibly trumpets, extended toward her. These may be “sweet spirits” awakening her (p. 15 of Stanley’s translation of Leonora; see also the poem’s concluding stanza, quoted in the caption to illus. 14). At least 5(?) figures hover above Leonora’s mother on the left. They may represent the “airy rabble” of “spectres” haunting Leonora’s nightmare (p. 10). Another figure to the right descends diagonally toward the group of 5 with at least one arm extended toward them. There may be flames, or several alternative positions for a sword, rising from this figure’s extended hand. This may be a benign presence, chasing away the creatures of Leonora’s frightening dream. I am not able to decipher the cluster of forms sketched immediately above the head of Leonora’s mother on the left; they may be related in some vague way to the horse ridden by Leonora in her nightmare ride to the land of the dead.

14. Tailpiece, p. 16, to Gottfried Augustus Bürger, Leonora, translated and altered by J. T. Stanley, 1796. Stipple etching/engraving by “Perry” (full name unknown) after Blake’s watercolor (illus. 11). Design 6.5 x 12.7 cm., platemark 9.5 x 15.2 cm. BB pl. 3. Essick collection. Click to show more.

Blake’s design illustrates the final stanza of Stanley’s translation, printed just above this tailpiece on p. 16:
“Wake, Leonora!—wake to Love!
“For thee, his choicest wreath he wove;”
Death vainly aim’d his Dart.
The Past was all a dream; she woke—
He lives;—’twas William’s self who spoke,
And clasp’d her to his Heart.
The text does not indicate the presence of Leonora’s mother, pictured on the left, in this concluding scene. Blake represents her as one of his figures of fallen nature, a “Mother of my Mortal part” (“To Tirzah,” E 30), or as a personification of “Aged Ignorance” (For Children: The Gates of Paradise, E 32; see also Europe, E 64). A particularly close visual and thematic parallel is the seated woman in the illus. to the 1797 ed. of Young’s Night Thoughts, p. 35 (BB pl. 20). In Stanley’s version of Bürger’s poem, the mother utters conventional pieties in her attempt to assuage her daughter’s grief over the supposed death of Leonora’s fiancé, William, but also proposes that he may still be alive and has found another lover. The mother also admonishes her daughter for questioning God. Perhaps Blake associated such sentiments with the established church and its restrictive moral codes. The mother’s features are more refined, and her expression less stupefied, in Perry’s engraving than in Blake’s drawing. 

The passage illustrated is Stanley’s addition to Bürger’s original, which ends with Leonora dead and William still absent. In a letter of 15 April 1796 to the book’s publisher, William Miller, quoted in the “Advertisement” in the book, Stanley complains that the poem might be “calculated … to injure the cause of Religion and Morality” (vi). “Such reflections have tempted me to make the alterations I have alluded to” (vii). In his “Preface,” Miller further explains that “the Poem will be found, in many respects, to have been altered from the original; but more particularly towards the conclusion, where the translator thinking the moral not sufficiently explained, has added several lines” (x). Miller then offers a more “literal” translation of Bürger’s final 8 lines, ending with the following address to Leonora:
Though rack’d with sorrow, be resign’d,
Thy earthly course is at an end,
May God unto thy Soul be kind. (x)
By replacing this with a happy ending, Stanley vindicates the mother’s beliefs in the goodness of God and the power of prayer. The theological and ethical perspectives shared by the translator and the publisher have much in common with Leonora’s mother. Is Blake’s characterization of her also a critique of them? Click to show less.

Separate Plates and Plates in Series

“Chaucers Canterbury Pilgrims.” John Windle, March online cat., 5th st., 1st Colnaghi printing of Feb. or early March 1881 on thin laid “Japan” paper, edges lined with later paper, “a superb impression” ($20,000). For this printing, see the anonymous notice of “recent impressions which have been struck off [by Colnaghi] on Japanese paper” in Notes and Queries, 6th series, vol. 3 (5 March 1881): 200. Colnaghi acquired the copperplate at CL, 4 Feb. 1881, #483 (£35).

Dante engravings. Swann, 1 May, #285, pl. 4 only, impression on laid India, 1838 or 1892 printing, illus. ($6240 to the E. J. Pratt Library, Victoria University, Toronto). Quinn’s auction, Falls Church, Virginia, 15 Sept., #285, pl. 3 only, 1968 printing, illus. ($300).

“Enoch,” modified lithograph, SP impression 1B. Acquired no later than fall 2013 by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, accession no. 2013.146. For the sale of this impression at auction and illus., see “Blake in the Marketplace, 2012,” Blake 46.4 (spring 2013). For cat. information and illus. of both the recto and the verso inscription, see the Met web site, <http://​www.​metmuseum.​org/​Collections/​search-the-collections/​426771?rpp=60&pg=3&ao=on&ft=william+blake+1757-1827&pos=123>.

“George Cumberland’s Card.” John Windle, March online cat., printed in black ink on “thick card … trimmed very close to the image at the left and right edges, once pasted down and thus with traces of mounting on the verso and pencil notes from an earlier collector” ($20,000). The impression offered at CSK, 5 Dec. 2012, #192, leaf 4.1 x 8.1 cm. (not sold; acquired by Windle after the auction). The verso notes would appear to include the awkward EJSW monogram of Edward J. Shaw of Walsall, active as a Blake collector c. 1890-1925. BHL, 16 July, #27, printed in black ink on laid paper, SP untraced impression 7, illus. (£2500).

Job engravings. Skinner auction, Boston, 1 Feb., #29, pl. numbered 20 only, 1874 printing on laid India, framed, illus. ($2600); 20 Sept., #19, title page and pl. numbered 10 only, 1874 printing on laid India, framed, illus. ($1140). Swann, 7 March, #2, pl. numbered 4 only, apparently the 1826 printing on Whatman paper after removal of the “Proof” inscription, illus. (not sold; estimate $1500-2500); #3, pl. numbered 8 only, same printing, illus. ($3360); 1 May, #281-83, pls. numbered 8-10 only, published “Proof” impressions on laid India, illus. (pl. 8 not sold, pl. 9 $2880, pl. 10 $2640); #284, pl. numbered 16 only, published “Proof” impression apparently printed directly on wove, illus. ($2400); 12 Sept., #1, pl. numbered 7 only, apparently the 1826 printing on Whatman paper after removal of the “Proof” inscription, illus. ($1875); #2, pl. numbered 17 only, published “Proof” impression on laid India, illus. ($1750); 30 Oct., #239, pl. numbered 2 only, 1874 printing on laid India, illus. ($2750); #240, pl. numbered 7 only, published “Proof” impression on laid India, illus. (not sold; estimate $2000-3000); #241, pl. numbered 16 only, 1874 printing on laid India, illus. (not sold; estimate $2000-3000). R. E. Lewis & Daughter, May cat. of “Recent Acquisitions,” #6, pl. numbered 16 only, published “Proof” impression on laid India, illus. ($3000). BL, 30 May, #108, complete set, 1874 printing on laid India, curiously “loose in a custom made hinged wooden box with glazed viewing panel to front cover,” illus. (not sold; estimate £10,000-15,000); same copy, 11 July, #215, illus. (not sold; estimate £5000-7500). Lyon & Turnbull auction, Edinburgh, 20 July, #210, 3 pls. only: pls. numbered 9 and 12, published “Proof” impressions on laid India, pl. numbered 14, 1874 printing on laid India, illus. (“£1300” but perhaps bought in); same group, 4 Oct., #74, illus. (£1000). SL, 17 Sept., #1, complete set, published “Proof” impressions on laid India, full morocco by Riviere & Son, illus. (£31,250). CNY, 29 Oct., #792, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, the property of Ann Vershbow, complete set, published “Proof” impressions on “French paper” (BB 519), scattered minor foxing, original buff boards worn with cover label, illus. ($68,750; estimate $30,000-50,000). CL, 20 Nov., #345, pl. numbered 18 only, 1874 printing on laid India, margins foxed, from the “collection of the late Mrs T.S. Eliot,” illus. (£500). EB, Nov., pl. numbered 11 only, published “Proof” impression on wove, foxed, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $2700 or “best offer”).

“Mrs Q,” after Villiers, 1820. Adam Partridge auction, Macclesfield, Cheshire, 31 Jan., #545, with a “bill of sale for £35 dated 18th December 1944 from Chas. J. Sawyer Ltd,” framed, illus. (£120). The figure’s auburn hair suggests a 2nd st. impression from Blake’s original copperplate rather than the lithographic facsimile of 1906 with darker brunette hair. Possibly the impression from the W. E. Moss collection sold at auction in 1937, lot 201, with “top and side margins cut away,” as in this impression, and offered in a Sawyer cat. of the same year for £25—see SP 196, untraced impression 19. See also the 1906 facsimile under Interesting Blakeana, below.

“Zephyrus and Flora,” after Stothard, 1784. EB, Dec. 2012, lightly stained, matted and framed, illus. (acquired by Essick at the “buy it now” price of £14.95). A previously unrecorded impression printed in dark brown ink on laid paper with an illegible watermark probably composed of letters. Leaf 18.0 x 21.0 cm. trimmed to an oval close to the design, only the signatures retained among the inscriptions. The st. of this impression cannot be determined beyond doubt because the only differences between the 2 sts. appear in the inscribed title. The paper, however, suggests that this is a 1st st.; the 3 recorded impressions of that st. are on laid paper, whereas the 3 recorded impressions of the 2nd st. are on wove. The only other traced impression in dark brown ink (Keynes collection, Fitzwilliam Museum) is printed in that color plus blue and reddish brown.

The British vendor on EB, “Pat” of “4 changinghands,” tells me that she acquired this impression in a mixed lot of prints at an auction house (I suspect Bamfords) in Derby, but has no further provenance information. Only the 3rd impression I’ve ever seen on the market; the others were sold in 1976 (2nd st., black ink, from the collection of Geoffrey Keynes, SP impression 2C) and 1999 (1st st., sanguine ink; see Blake 33.4 [spring 2000]: 109).

Stothard’s “Zephyrus and Flora” may have influenced Blake’s depiction of the 2 figures hovering near flowers on the title page to The Book of Thel. If so, then Blake’s male may be the wind attempting to embrace (and pollinate?) the female personification of the flower from which she emerges.

Letterpress Books with Engravings by and after Blake, Including Prints Extracted from Such Books

Allen, Roman History, 1798. EB, April, lacking pl. 1, scattered foxing on pls., modern quarter calf, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of £300).

Ariosto, Orlando furioso. Justin Croft/Simon Beattie, Feb. cat. of “English Verse 1751-1800 Part I: A-G,” #30, 1785 ed., 5 vols., pls. foxed and browned, contemporary calf, illus. (£300). Havercroft Books, June online cat., 1783 ed., 5 vols., some browning, some pls. (including Blake’s) loose, contemporary calf worn, the same copy offered by Hava Books for £350, April 2012 online cat. (£385). Poor Richard’s Books, June online cat., 1783 ed., 5 vols., later calf, vol. 5 “fragile” (£350). John Taylor Books, June online cat., 1783 ed., 5 vols., contemporary half calf worn, bindings illus. (£300). Old Saratoga Books, June online cat., 1799 ed., 5 vols., some leaves “grubby,” contemporary calf very worn, bindings illus. ($350). Caliban Books, June online cat., 1785 ed., 5 vols., scattered foxing, contemporary calf worn ($150). EB, July-Aug., 1799 ed., vol. 3 only with Blake’s pl., stained, no description of binding other than “pieces of covering missing,” illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of £9.99).

Bible. Royal Universal Family Bible, 1780. Victoria Bookshop, Oct. online cat., “vol 1” only (Old Testament) and thus presumably with Blake’s pl. 1 (of 5), “boards detached” (£123.30).

Blair, The Grave, 1813 quarto, hand-colored copy. CNY, 29 Oct., #789, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, the frontispiece portrait of Blake not colored, “date defaced” (so that this copy could be taken for the 1808 ed.?), 19th-century “niger” by the “Hempstead Bindery,” rebacked, top edges gilt, “dampstaining at the foot,” illus. ($93,750; estimate $60,000-80,000). The auction cat. states that this is “possibly the master copy, colored by Blake,” and that “according to Martin Butlin, the present copy appears to have been colored by Blake himself.” BBS 199 lists this copy as an 1808 quarto and states that the coloring is “apparently by Blake.” John Windle and I suspect that the hand coloring is c. 1850 or later.Windle inspected the original in early 2013. I studied the original in 1980 and good-quality digital images of all pls. in Nov. 2013. The heavy coloring of flames and the tinting of angels’ wings in multiple pastel hues seem particularly uncharacteristic of Blake.

The auction cat. points out that the Vershbows acquired this copy from “Scopazzi, 1971.” Windle tells me that the San Francisco dealer John Scopazzi (1910-87) specialized in acquiring uncolored maps and prints and having them professionally colored in period styles. I doubt that this copy of The Grave was colored by Scopazzi, but such a source always raises suspicions. The auction cat. also refers to “the Keynes copy of the 1813 edition” hand colored, but I have not been able to find any record of such a copy, nor do I recall seeing such a work in Sir Geoffrey’s collection. A hand-colored copy of the 1808 quarto ed. is in the Huntington Library, call no. 54049. Its tinting is more skillful, restrained, and convincing than the Vershbow copy. The palette and placement of colors in the Huntington volume share some characteristics with hand-colored copies of Young’s Night Thoughts, but I hesitate to ascribe the tinting to Blake or his wife, Catherine.

Blair, The Grave, uncolored copies. EB, Jan., pl. 7 only, 1813 imprint, illus. (£7.99); Jan.-Feb., “1813” (actually 1870) folio, publisher’s cloth rebacked, illus. ($330.87); May, 1808 quarto, foxed, contemporary quarter calf very worn, front cover detached, illus. ($356); June, pls. only, probably the Camden Hotten 1870 printing of the pls. only issued unbound in portfolio, marginal browning, later cloth portfolio worn, front cover detached, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $499.99); pl. 4 only, a previously unrecorded prepublication proof, light foxing, illus. (£59.95); Oct., 1808 quarto, text apparently complete but lacking all but pls. 1 (title page), 2, 4, 6-9, imprint trimmed from pl. 1, some pls. “yellowed,” scattered foxing, 19th-century half calf worn, illus. (£138). Arader Galleries, Feb. online cat., 1808 quarto, library label of Estelle Doheny, modern morocco ($4500). The Doheny copy was sold CNY, 21 Feb. 1989, #1709 ($1320). Houle (sometimes spelled Houlé) Rare Books, Feb. online cat., 1808 quarto, modern three-quarter morocco ($3750). Antipodean Books, Feb. online cat., frontispiece portrait of Blake only, no indication of st. or printing, framed ($275). Waverley Books, June online cat., 1808 “folio” (but probably the quarto), “hard covers” (£2000). D & E Lake, June online cat., “1813” (actually 1870) folio, modern cloth ($2500). Peter L. Stern, June online cat., “1813,” probably the quarto, contemporary half morocco worn ($1750). Contact Editions, June online cat., “1813” (but probably the 1870 folio), damp staining, “blind decorated black cloth” restored ($1500). Bonhams auction, New York, 25 June, #3217, 1808 quarto, inscription by James Neagle (probably the engraver, 1765-1822) dated 22 Feb. 1816, “some marginal damp-stains,” uncut in original boards worn and rebacked with cloth tape, “paper label upper cover,” quarter morocco slipcase, illus. (not sold; estimate $2000-3000). Leslie Hindman auction, Chicago, 7 Aug., #88, 1813 “folio” (but probably the quarto), scattered foxing, original boards with cover label, very worn with boards detached and morocco spine “deteriorated,” illus. ($688). BG, 15 Aug., #281, 1808 quarto, marginal foxing, contemporary calf worn, new endpapers, illus. (£1000); #282, 1813 quarto, browned and foxed, “later calf with original wrappers laid down on boards and mounted on covers, original printed label on upper cover,” with a “facsimile on [of?] the same” (£400); 14 Nov., #28, “1813” quarto (but probably the 1870 ed.), “original blind-stamped cloth” rebacked (£366). CNY, 29 Oct., #788, 1808 folio, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, occasional foxing, pls. 8 and 9 in the 2nd published st. as in the 1808 quarto, all other pls. in the 1st published st., later morocco, illus. ($12,500). Edward Nudelman, Oct. online cat., 1808 “folio size” (probably the quarto), contemporary calf worn and rebacked ($4500). Celsus Books, Oct. online cat., 1808 quarto, light foxing to margins, contemporary calf worn and rebacked, illus. (£1995). For the proof of pl. 4, see illus. 15.

15. Luigi Schiavonetti after Blake, “The Counsellor, King, Warrior, Mother & Child in the Tomb,” pl. 4 for Robert Blair, The Grave, 1808 (see enlargement). Previously unrecorded 1st prepublication proof st. of this etching/engraving. Essick collection. Image 14.0 x 22.8 cm. on leaf of laid paper 14.6 x 23.4 cm., 0.22 mm. thick. No watermark and no clearly visible chain lines in spite of prominent wire lines. The 1st published st., appearing in the 1808 folio issue of The Grave, is on a very similar laid paper—but measurably thicker at 0.30 mm.

The design in the impression reproduced here lacks a number of hatching strokes present in all later sts. The most noticeable absences appear on the counsellor’s right arm above and below the elbow, the left (upper) extension of his long mustache, and both legs below the knees, particularly where his gown or shroud gathers at his ankles. The pillow below and left of his head, the unrolled portion of the scroll below and to the right of his right hand, and the pillow below the king’s head lack diagonal hatching patterns found in all later sts. Fine horizontal lines have been added to the warrior’s thighs, the mother’s breasts, and the right side of the child’s chest in the next recorded st. Oddly, a small patch of hatching on the central extension of the counsellor’s beard, about 2.5 cm. right of his mouth, does not appear in later sts. These 4 lines were probably burnished off the pl. The flame extending from the oil lamp, upper center, has been brightened and made more prominent in the next st. by burnishing away a few interior lines and adding a stronger outline on its left side.

The leaf on which this proof is printed extends 2.0 mm. below the lower margin of the design. The upper half of the signatures found in the 1st published st. would appear if they had been present. Since the next known st. is a proof on Whatman wove paper with the design completed but before all letters (Essick collection), it seems probable that the copperplate from which the proof reproduced here was printed also lacked all letters.

Bonnycastle, Introduction to Mensuration, 1791. Thomas Joyce, June online cat., contemporary sheep worn ($175, acquired by John Windle and sold to a private American collector). Only the 2nd copy of this ed. I’ve ever seen on the market.

Boydell’s Graphic Illustrations … of Shakspeare, c. 1803. Antiquariat Manfred Nosbüsch, June online cat., marginal foxing, later half morocco (€3900).

Brown, Elements of Medicine, 1795. Allison Robinson, June online cat., apparently vol. 1 only but with Blake’s pl., foxed, calf very worn ($250).

Bryant, New System … of Ancient Mythology, 1st ed., 1774-76. EB, Feb., 3 vols., contemporary morocco worn, some covers loose, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $775); same copy, April-May, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $679.99); same copy, May-June, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $550).

Bürger, Leonora, 1796. CNY, 29 Oct., #784, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, minor staining, 19th-century half morocco, illus. ($3000 to John Windle acting for a private American collector).

Catullus, Poems, 1795. EB, Feb., 2 vols. in 1, imprints trimmed off both pls., contemporary calf very worn, front cover detached, illus. ($99). Caliban Books, June online cat., 2 vols., half calf very worn ($800).

Darwin, Botanic Garden. PBA, 18 Feb., #72, 3rd ed. of Part 1, 1795, 4th ed. of Part 2, 1794, 2 vols. in 1, contemporary calf worn and rebacked, “original green spine label printed in black” (I doubt that it is the original label), illus. ($900). Edward Nudelman, March online cat., 1st ed. of Part 1, 3rd ed. of Part 2, both 1791, 2 vols. in 1, foxed, covers detached ($1750). Possibly the same copy offered in Nudelman’s Nov. 1991 cat. 18, #104 ($325). Barter Books, June online cat., 2nd ed. of Part 1, 1791, 2nd ed. of Part 2, 1790, 2 vols., scattered foxing, “modern rebind,” illus. (£320). By the Book, June online cat., 3rd ed. of Part 1, 1795, 4th ed. of Part 2, 1794, 2 vols. in 1, calf very worn, spine repaired ($400). EB, July, 1st ed. of Part 1, 1791, 2nd ed. of Part 2, 1790, 2 vols. in 1, some stains, covers and most of backstrip missing, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $650); same copy, July-Aug., illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $455); same copy, Aug., illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $377.65); another copy, Aug.-Sept., 1st ed. of Part 1, 3rd ed. of Part 2, both 1791, 2 vols. in 1, some bad stains, contemporary calf, front cover loose and backstrip missing, illus. ($233.50); Nov., Blake’s pl. 1 only, illus. (£98). BL, 3 Oct., 3rd ed. of Part 1, 1795, 4th ed. of Part 2, 1794, 2 vols. in 1, some foxing, contemporary calf worn, rebacked, Blake’s pl. 6 (“Tornado”) illus. (£744). Hordern House, Oct. online cat., 1st ed. of Part 1, 3rd ed. of Part 2, both 1791, 2 vols. in 1, scattered light foxing, contemporary calf, illus. ($6500 Australian). Chiswick Auctions, Hounslow, 27 Nov., #74, 3rd ed. of Part 1, 1795, 4th ed. of Part 2, 1794, scattered foxing, 19th-century calf rebacked, illus. (£270).

Darwin, Poetical Works, 1806. William Allen, June online cat., 3 vols., scattered light foxing, later half calf, illus. (£1500). Arroyo Seco Books, June online cat., 3 vols., quarter calf worn ($2500).

Earle, Practical Observations on the Operation for the Stone, 1793, with Appendix to a Treatise on the Operation for the Stone, 1796.  Uncommon Books, May online cat., pls. 1-2 foxed, CB pl. 3 (mentioned in BB #451 but not numbered) in the 1st st., published as part of the Appendix but misbound upside-down facing p. 80 in the 1793 text, bound with Earle, A Treatise on the Hydrocele, 1796, 19th-century boards, spine repaired with cloth tape ($288 to Essick). The only copy of Earle’s Appendix, and the only impression of CB pl. 3, I’ve ever seen on the market. BB states that the attribution of this 3rd pl. to Blake “seems far from conclusive” (550). CB 61 accepts it as Blake’s work, an attribution 1st made in Geoffrey Keynes, “William Blake and Bart’s,” Blake 7.1 (summer 1973): 9-10. The lettering in the scratched inscriptions added to the 2nd st. of CB pl. 3 is crucial in establishing the attribution. In BBS 211, Bentley states that he is “now willing to include the plate as Blake’s, though balking at their [Keynes’s and Essick’s] certainty.” See also Leslie F. Chard, II, “Two ‘New’ Blake Engravings: Blake, James Earle, and the Surgeon’s Art,” Blake Studies 6.2 (1975): 153-65.

Enfield, The Speaker, 1795. EB, Aug.-Sept., contemporary calf very worn, covers loose, illus. ($128.50).

Fenning and Collyer, New System of Geography, 1785-86. Versandantiquariat Karl Heinz Schmitz, April online cat., 2 vols., lacking most pls., modern quarter calf, binding illus. (€180; apparently sold by May). Schmitz has not responded to my inquiry, but John Windle tells me that only Blake’s pl. 1 is present, 1st st.

Flaxman, Hesiod designs, 1817. Ursus Books, Jan. online cat., later boards ($1500). Wickham Books, Jan. online cat., 30 (of 37) pls., “light to severe foxing throughout,” half “leather” (£474.74). EB, Feb., bound with Flaxman’s Odyssey, 1805, Iliad, 1805, and Aeschylus, 1831, designs, scattered foxing, contemporary morocco worn, illus. ($1077); another copy of the same group, Nov., 19th-century morocco, illus. ($360.50). Quinn’s auction, Falls Church, Virginia, 20 June, #221, 3 pls. foxed, modern quarter calf ($170). Bonhams Los Angeles, 23 June, #7182, bound with Flaxman’s Odyssey, 1805, Iliad, 1805, and Aeschylus, 1831, designs, scattered foxing, 19th-century morocco worn, upper cover detached, illus. (not sold; estimate $300-500); the same copy or another of the same group, BHO, 26 Nov., #135, “moderate dampstaining throughout,” 19th-century morocco, with “another” work not described (£100). BG, 10 Oct., #51, bound with Flaxman’s Iliad, 1805, Odyssey, 1805, and Aeschylus, 1831, designs, “slightly foxed, a little soiled,” contemporary morocco worn, binding illus. (not sold; estimate £300-500); 14 Nov., #51, 2 copies, “occasional spotting,” original boards with label, worn, with Flaxman’s Iliad designs, 1805, 34 (of 39) pls. only, foxed and damp stained, many pls. “loose” (not sold; estimate £120-180).

Flaxman, Iliad designs, 1805. Hollett & Son, Jan. online cat., “rather foxed and water-stained in places throughout, sometimes heavy,” contemporary half calf worn, binding illus. (£402.50). DW, 15 May, #525, with Flaxman’s Odyssey, 1805, and Aeschylus, n.d., designs, all 3 foxed and stained, Iliad and Odyssey in (publisher’s?) boards very worn, Aeschylus in contemporary half morocco very worn, upper cover detached (£100). BG, 19 June, #456, bound with Flaxman’s Odyssey designs, 1805, some tears and creases, contemporary morocco worn (not sold; estimate £250-350); same copy, 15 Aug., #292 (£240). EB, Aug., bound with Flaxman’s Odyssey designs, 1805, a few marginal repairs, contemporary morocco worn, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of £900 or “best offer”). BG, 12 Sept., #175, 2 copies, foxed, 1 copy in original boards with cover label, rebacked, the other contemporary morocco very worn, with a bound collection of 47 prepublication proofs of the Aeschylus, Iliad, and Odyssey designs engraved by Piroli, many before all letters (£488 to John Windle for stock on an estimate of £100-150; vol. of proofs acquired Oct. by Essick). BL, 3 Oct., #104, bound with Flaxman’s Odyssey designs, 1805, foxed, contemporary half calf very worn, illus. (£248). Finecopy, Nov. online cat., bound with Flaxman’s Odyssey, 1805, “without any foxing,” contemporary morocco, illus. (£800). See also Hesiod designs, above.

Fuseli, Lectures on Painting, 1801. BL, 3 Oct., #78, minor spotting, later morocco, illus. (£62).

Gay, Fables. EB, Jan., 1793 ed., 2 vols., contemporary half calf, illus. ($334); [1811] ed., 2 vols., later calf, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $1450); April, [1811] ed., 2 vols., some pls. badly foxed in margins, contemporary calf repaired, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $1100 or “best offer”); June-July, 1793 ed., 2 vols., foxed, contemporary morocco worn, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of £425); July, 1793 ed., 2 vols., later calf, illus. (£255); Nov.-Dec., 1793 ed., 2 vols., pls. “spotted,” contemporary morocco very worn, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of £725 or “best offer”). Swann, 28 Feb., #75, 1793 ed., 2 vols. in 1, scattered foxing, contemporary calf, illus. ($450); 27 June, #84, Blake’s pls. only, described as “a group of 11 (of 12)” pls., but all 12 are illus., scattered foxing ($210). CSK, 20 March, #352, 1793 ed., 2 vols., later morocco, illus. (£563). James Cummins, April cat. 117, #9, 1793 ed., 2 vols., contemporary morocco, illus. ($1750). Robert Frew, June online cat., [1811] ed., 2 vols., later morocco (£1500). Second Story Books, June online cat., 1793 ed., 2 vols. in 1, scattered foxing, contemporary morocco worn ($1500). Argosy Books, June online cat., 1793 ed., 2 vols., contemporary calf worn ($1200). BL, 11 July, #120, 1793 ed., 2 vols., lacking pp. 203-04 in vol. 1, with Aesop, Fables, 1793, 2 vols., uniformly bound in later calf worn, illus. (£350). Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood auction, Honiton, Devon, 21 Aug., #147, 1793 ed., 2 vols., later calf, illus. (£310). Skinner auction, Boston, 17 Nov., #141, 1793 ed., 2 vols., later morocco worn, illus. ($420). Pls. sold individually are not included.

Gough, Sepulchral Monuments, 1786-96. BL, 14 Dec. 2012, #266, 4 of 5 parts only (but including all pls. attributed to Blake) in 2 vols., contemporary Russia worn (£1700; estimate £300-400). Chiswick Auctions, Hounslow, 5 March, #109, 2 vols. in 3, light staining and foxing, contemporary half calf worn (£900).

Hartley, Observations on Man, quarto issue, 1791. Arroyo Seco Books, Jan. online cat., contemporary calf ($3500).

Hayley, Ballads, 1805. BL, 3 Oct., #79, 1st st. of pl. 1, sts. of other pls. not recorded, contemporary Russia very worn, covers detached, modern cloth box, illus. (£868). CNY, 29 Oct., #787, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, 1st st. of pl. 1, sts. of other pls. not recorded, uncut in original boards with spine label worn and repaired, illus. ($2500).

Hayley, Life of Cowper, 1803-04. EB, Feb., pl. 3 only, 1st st., imprint trimmed off, foxed, the same impression offered EB, June-July 2012, illus. (once again no bids on a required minimum bid of $299); July, pl. 2 only, foxed, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $140); same impression of pl. 2, Dec., illus. (same price). BHL, 10 April, #107, pl. 1 only, 1st st., framed, illus. (£350). Shapero Books, June online cat., 1st ed., “two volumes” (lacking vol. 3?), contemporary calf (£300). Better World Books, June online cat., ed. not indicated, 3 vols., “leather” very worn, front cover of vol. 1 detached ($305.25). Cotswold Internet Books, June online cat., 2nd ed., vol. 2 only (presumably with Blake’s pls. 3-4), “large paper,” foxed, calf rebacked and worn (£30). Jarndyce, Sept. cat. 203, #614, 1st ed., 3 vols., pl. 4 in the 2nd st., with Cowper, Poems, 1806, and Cowper, Illustrated by a Series of Views, 1803, 5 vols. in all uniformly bound in contemporary calf, illus. (£1200). GP, Oct. online cat., pls. 1-3, 5, 6 only, illus. (£220, £190, £140, £90, and £90 respectively).

Hayley, Life of Romney, 1809. EB, March-April, scattered foxing on pls., 19th-century morocco, illus. (unstated reserve not met). GP, May online cat., Blake’s pl. only, imprint trimmed off, marginal foxing, illus. (£220). G. W. Stuart, June online cat., minor foxing, later half morocco ($575). Sanctuary Books, June online cat., contemporary calf rebacked ($475). Powell’s Books, June online cat., stained, contemporary calf very worn ($350). Offas Dyke Books, June online cat., half calf worn (£240). Besley’s Books, Nov. online cat., scattered foxing, contemporary calf, illus. (£350).

Hayley, Triumphs of Temper, 1803. EB, May, small-paper issue, contemporary calf worn, illus. (£77). Bohemian Bookworm, June online cat., probably the small-paper issue, “leather cover” ($850). Am Here Books, June online cat., probably the small-paper issue, contemporary calf worn ($525). Quaritch, Aug. cat. of “new acquisitions,” #32, small-paper issue, “ownership inscription of Louisa Anne Hope dated 1807, bookplate of her descendant Julius Hope, Baron von Szilassy,” contemporary calf (£650). Louisa Hope may be the second wife (née Louisa Beresford) of the important collector and connoisseur Thomas Hope (1769-1831). He commissioned Flaxman’s designs for Dante’s Divine Comedy no later than 1793. Maria Flaxman, John Flaxman’s half-sister, invented the designs Blake engraved for this 1803 ed. of Hayley’s Triumphs. Jarndyce, Sept. cat. 203, #7, apparently the small-paper issue, lacking the half-title, “few spots,” later calf (£650). CNY, 29 Oct., #786, small-paper issue, lacking the half-title, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, contemporary morocco, illus. ($813 to John Windle for stock). BG, 14 Nov., #29, contemporary calf worn, with 7 other vols. (£391).

Hogarth, Works. EB, Jan., Blake’s pl. only, a late st., possibly 5th, illus. ($112.50); Feb., Blake’s pl. only, 6th st., framed, illus. ($168.50); Blake’s pl. only, 4th st., illus. (sold at the “buy it now” price of $60); May, Blake’s pl. only, the 7th (final) st. from the “1822” (actually c. 1880) issue by Quaritch, stabholes from prior binding in top margin, tear in bottom margin, light staining in margins, the only impression of this printing I have ever seen on the market, illus. (£23 to Essick). BL, 30 May, #111, Boydell ed., n.d. (1790), 108 pls. on 87 leaves, some browning and spotting, lower left margins damp stained, contemporary half morocco worn, illus. (£1300). John King, June online cat., 1822 ed., 119 leaves of pls., stains and a few tears, cloth rebacked with buckram ($4794).

Hunter, Historical Journal, 1793, quarto issue. Halewood and Sons, June online cat., occasional light spotting, contemporary calf, illus. (£6000). Peter Harrington, June online cat., scattered foxing, later calf, binding illus. (£3850). George Bayntun, June online cat., contemporary boards rebacked with calf, illus. (£3500). Stainbeck Road, June online cat., lacking 3 pls. but with Blake’s, modern buckram (£2950). Hordern House, Oct. online cat., early 19th-century calf, joints repaired, illus. ($10,500 Australian). BL, 28 Nov., #315, light foxing, contemporary calf rebacked, illus. (£2480).

Josephus, Works. Tombland Bookshop, June online cat., probably BB issue B or C, foxed, contemporary calf very worn, covers detached (£225). Blackwell’s, June online cat., probably the 1st issue published by C. Cooke with the title page as in BB issue D, but the body of the text not “reset” (description of issue D, BB p. 588) and thus as in issue C, recent half calf, title page illus. (£750, acquired by John Windle for Essick). EB, Aug., BB issue A, scattered foxing with some soiling and damp staining, contemporary calf very worn, illus. (£375); Sept., BB issue C, marginal foxing, contemporary morocco worn, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of £575).

Kimpton, History of the Bible, c. 1781. Hard to Find Books, June online cat., soiled, “leather boards” detached ($380).

Lavater, Aphorisms. EB, May, 1794 ed., 2nd st. of the pl., foxed, contemporary calf very worn, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of £199.95). Northgate Books, June online cat., 1788 ed., later calf (£300).

Lavater, Essays on Physiognomy. EB, Dec. 2012, 1789-98 ed., 3 vols. in 5, contemporary calf worn, illus. (€655); Aug., “1792” (c. 1818) ed., 3 vols. in 5, contemporary morocco very worn, illus. ($202.50). Philadelphia Rare Books, June online cat., 1789-98 ed., 3 vols. in 5, moderate to mild foxing, contemporary calf rebacked, illus. ($2500). BL, 3 Oct., #76, “1789-92” (a mixed set?), 3 vols. in 5, soiled and with repairs, contemporary calf worn, rebacked, illus. (£199). PBA, 21 Nov., #107, 1810 ed., 3 vols. in 5, light foxing, 19th-century calf worn, illus. (not sold; estimate $1500-2000); same copy, 19 Dec., #184, illus. ($510).

Malkin, Father’s Memoirs of His Child, 1806. Bonhams auction, San Francisco, 16 Dec. 2012, #5243, later cloth, illus. ($25; estimate $200-300). John Windle tells me that this copy was in very poor condition. EB, Jan.-Feb., minor foxing on Blake’s pl., uncut in later cloth, illus. ($720). David Lay auction, Penzance, 20 Aug., #1245, scattered foxing, contemporary calf, illus. (£250). BG, 10 Oct., #52, occasional spotting, contemporary half calf, with 4 vols. unrelated to Blake (£415; estimate £150-200).

Nicholson, Introduction to Natural Philosophy. Scarthin Books, June online cat., 1782 ed., 2 vols., contemporary calf worn (£300). Alfa Antikvariat, June online cat., 1787 ed., half calf worn ($463).

Novelist’s Magazine. Chapter 1 Books, June online cat., vols. 10-11 (Sir Charles Grandison) only, 1783, foxed, “front board of vol 10 is missing” ($140). EB, Aug.-Sept., vols. 10-14 only, 1783, lacking the general title pages, contemporary half calf very worn, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of £99.99); same copy, Sept., illus. (£79.99). Blake’s 3 pls. are in vol. 10.

Rees, Cyclopædia, 1820. Antiquariat Gertrud Thelen, June online cat., complete in 39 text vols. and 6 pls. vols., half calf worn, bindings illus. (€9500). Country Books, June online cat., 38 text vols. (lacking vol. 17) and 4 pls. vols. (apparently lacking vols. 3 and 5 and thus Blake’s pl. 3), half calf very worn ($1164). EB, July, pls. vol. 1 only, many pls. stained, contemporary calf worn, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $200); pls. vols. 1, 2, and 4 only, offered individually, half calf very worn, illus. ($20.50 each); pls. vol. 3 only, with CB pl. 3B, half calf very worn, illus. ($37.56). Clearances, Nov. online cat., pls. vol. 1 only, “original cloth[?], later rebacked” (£950).

Ritson, Select Collection of English Songs, 1783. Travis & Emery Music, June online cat., vols. 1 and 2 only offered individually, 2 leaves detached in each, contemporary calf worn, covers loose (£87.90 each). Blake’s 9 pls. are in vols. 1-2.

Salzmann, Elements of Morality. Artisan Books & Bindery, April online cat., 1799 ed., 3 vols., contemporary calf, illus. ($2750). Quinn’s auction, Falls Church, Virginia, 25 April, #263, 1792 ed., lacking vol. 2 (of 3), modern quarter calf, with an unrelated vol., illus. (no price information; estimate $80-120). John Windle, Oct. online cat., undated Juvenile Library ed. dated in BB #492E to c. 1815, 2 vols., no description of the binding ($1500).

Scott, Poetical Works, 1782. Justin Croft/Simon Beattie, Nov. cat. of “English Verse 1751-1800 Part III: R-Z,” #45, contemporary calf (£600).

Shakespeare, Dramatic Works, 1802. Rosenbad Antique Books, June online cat., 9 vols., scattered foxing, contemporary calf rebacked and worn, illus. ($9900). D & E Lake, June online cat., 9 vols., lacking 4 pls. but apparently with Blake’s, scattered foxing, contemporary morocco worn ($8325). Arundel Books, June online cat., 9 vols., foxed and browned, calf very worn, some covers loose ($4500). Heritage Book Shop, Nov. online cat., 9 vols. in 6, 95 pls., contemporary morocco rebacked ($12,500).

Shakespeare, Plays. EB, Jan.-Feb., 1805 ed., 10 vol. issue, later half calf worn, illus. ($190—a great bargain if the pls. are in good order); Oct., 1805 ed., 9 vol. issue, damp staining in 2 vols., later calf, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $1200). PBA, 18 Feb., #190, 1805 ed., 10 vol. issue, contemporary calf rebacked, bindings illus. ($1440). Bookshop on the Heath, June online cat., 1811 ed., 9 vols., contemporary calf (£1495). MW Books, Nov. online cat., 1811 ed., 9 vols., contemporary calf, bindings illus. ($1954).

Stedman, Narrative, 1806, colored copy. Doyle auction, New York, 25 Nov., #413, 2 vols., scattered stains, contemporary half calf worn, 1 cover detached, illus. ($6875).

Stedman, Narrative, uncolored copies. Lyon & Turnbull auction, Edinburgh, 16 Jan., #441, 1813 ed., 2 vols., marginal tears, “contemporary boards” worn, illus. (£400). Freeman’s auction, Philadelphia, 4 April, #324, 1796 ed., 2 vols., contemporary calf worn, 1 pl. repaired, scattered foxing, illus. ($1792). Krull Books, June online cat., 1806 ed., 2 vols., some pls. browned, later calf (€7150). SaBeRo Books, June online cat., 1806 ed., 2 vols. in 1, contemporary calf rebacked (£4000). Halewood and Sons, June online cat., 1796 ed., 2 vols., scattered foxing, contemporary calf rebacked, illus. (£2295). Booklore, June online cat., 1813 ed., 2 vols., later morocco, bindings illus. (£1750). Maggs, July online cat., 1796 ed., 2 vols., many pls. foxed, contemporary calf worn with hinges repaired, illus. (£4000). EB, Oct., 1796 ed., 2 vols., lacking Blake’s pl. 14, scattered foxing, contemporary calf rebacked, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $5500); same copy and price, Nov.

Stuart and Revett, Antiquities of Athens. SL, 28 Feb., #130, 1762-1816, 4 vols., early 19th-century morocco, illus. (£39,650; estimate £10,000-15,000). Sotheran’s, March “Art and Architecture” cat., #207, 1762-94, 3 vols., 19th-century Russia, illus. (£16,200). Blake’s 4 pls. are in vol. 3 of 1794.

Varley, Zodiacal Physiognomy, 1828. Odyssey Books, June online cat., Blake’s pls. 2-3 in their 2nd sts., some pls. stained, later cloth, illus. ($10,500).

Virgil, Pastorals, 1821. Howes Bookshop, Sept. cat. 353, #29, vol. 2 only with Blake’s pls. 26-27, late 19th-century half morocco (£750). CNY, 29 Oct., #791, 2 vols., from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, the property of Alexander Vershbow, occasional minor spotting, 19th-century calf, illus. ($17,500; estimate $5000-7000). Blake’s wood engravings are in vol. 1.

Wollstonecraft, Marie et Caroline, year VII of the revolutionary calendar (22 Sept. 1798 to 22 Sept. 1799). EB, March-April, marginal stains, later calf, illus. (€810.55 to John Windle, who sold it immediately to the E. J. Pratt Library, Victoria University, Toronto). A French translation of Original Stories from Real Life with reengravings of Blake’s pls. 2-6 1st published in 1791 (see BBS 265, 268-69). The author’s name is given as “Marie Vollstonecraft Godwin” on the French title page. Only the 2nd copy I’ve ever seen on the market. For description and illus. of all 5 pls., see G. E. Bentley, Jr., “Marie Vollstonecraft Godwin and William Blake in France: The First Foreign Engravings after Blake’s Designs,” Australian Journal of French Studies 26.2 (1989): 125-47.

Wollstonecraft, Original Stories, 1791. Bromer Booksellers, July online cat. 36, no item #, 2nd sts. of the pls., ink spots in a few margins, modern calf, the same copy offered in Aug. 2011 for $8500, illus. ($6500); same copy, Nov. ($7000). Freeman’s auction, Philadelphia, 26 Sept., #141, sts. of the pls. not indicated, scattered foxing, contemporary calf very worn ($1750).

Young, Night Thoughts, 1797. EB, Jan., pl. 18 only, framed, illus. ($300); April-May, lacking the “Explanation” leaf, some pls. cropped, light brown stains in lower margins, contemporary morocco rebacked, illus. ($5100). Luxury Catalogs, Feb. online cat., with the “Explanation” leaf, “occasional foxing,” contemporary morocco, illus. ($20,000). BL, 30 May, #107, with the “Explanation” leaf, various defects and stains, many margins “defective,” many pls. “silked” (covered with semi-transparent silk), contemporary morocco worn and rebacked, illus. (£1300). Charmaz Books, June online cat., no mention of the “Explanation” leaf, original “leather” rebacked, all edges gilt ($12,000). CNY, 29 Oct., #785, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, with the “Explanation” leaf, uncut, “tipped to guards throughout,” modern quarter “leather,” illus. ($10,000). Antiquariat Post, Nov. online cat., 38 (of 43) pls. only, no description of binding and thus possibly unbound (€6800).

Interesting Blakeana

Blake’s Cottage, 1 Blake’s Road, Felpham, West Sussex. Jackson-Stops, June online cat., #52661, a 17th-century brick and flint cottage, listed grade II*, Blake’s residence Sept. 1800 to fall 1803, on the market for the 1st time since 1928, many illus. including a detailed floor plan (guide price £650,000). According to the Blake Society, London, e-mail of 5 Sept., a sale was pending at £600,000 to a private buyer.

William Locke, Jr. (1767-1847), an album of 44 pencil, pen and ink, and chalk drawings. BHL, 10 April, #235, some signed and dated between 1780 and 1787, with 3 framed landscape drawings, “by descent through the family of William Gilpin,” illus. (£6250; estimate £2000-3000). The album was probably acquired by Rafael Valls Gallery, London, which held “An Exhibition of Drawings by William Lock the Younger,” 4-14 Dec. Locke (or Lock) was a student of Fuseli’s, whose influence is evident in these studies. Locke is listed as a subscriber to R. H. Cromek’s ed. of Robert Blair’s The Grave with Blake’s designs in the 1st and 2nd prospectuses (both Nov. 1805) and in 2 of the subsequent advertisements for the book (BR[2] 210, 214, 226).

Novelist’s Magazine, vol. 9, 1782, BB pl. 1 for “Sentimental Journey,” Blake after Stothard. EB, Feb., printed in dark brown, with signatures but lacking all other letters, with some lines removed (in comparison to the proof before all letters in the British Museum) in the lower frame of the cartouche below the central design, illus. (acquired at the “buy it now” price of $200 by a gullible Essick). Although offered as an original impression from Blake’s pl., this turned out to be a reproduction, probably a photo-etching or zincograph. The platemark was altered slightly from 17.4 x 11.2 cm. to 16.9 x 11.0 cm., but the design, including the elaborate frame, was reduced considerably from 15.6 x 10.5 cm. in original impressions to 12.6 x 8.6 cm. The paper of this reproduction is a type of hard wove sometimes called “Japan vellum” or “faux vellum” and not known to have been available in England until the second half of the 19th century.

The Theatrical Remembrancer, 1788. Elaine Beardsell, Aug. online cat., foxed, recent quarter morocco, illus. (£65). The Bookshop, Chapel Hill, Aug. online cat., with Barker’s Complete List of Plays, 1803, extensively annotated in pen and ink in an early hand, 2 vols. in original boards worn with spines amateurishly repaired with cloth tape ($175). BB #522A (1788 ed.) and C (1803 ed.). The Theatrical Remembrancer would appear to be a reissue of Egerton’s Theatrical Remembrancer, also 1788. The title page, leaf [a1], in the reissue is probably a cancellans. All 3 titles noted here list Blake’s “King Edward the Third” from Poetical Sketches. The issue with “Egerton’s” as the 1st word in the title (not in BB or BBS) is the earliest published bibliography to include a work by Blake. For further comments see the next entry, below.

Barker’s Continuation of Egerton’s Theatrical Remembrancer, 1801. Centerbridge Books, April online cat., scattered foxing, later cloth, illus. ($150). Lists Blake’s “King Edward the Third” from Poetical Sketches. BB #522B points out that the drama is wrongly attributed to “Murdock” in this 1801 ed., a mistake resulting from “a conflation from the 1788 Theatrical Remembrancer, where the entry after Blake’s ‘King Edward the Third’ is John Murdock [sic], Double Disguise, 12 mo, 1783.” The compiler of the 1801 ed. also made a spelling error, for the 1788 ed. (see above) accurately records the author of Double Disguise as “John Murdoch” (258). The errors in attribution and spelling are repeated in Barker’s Complete List of Plays, 1803 (see below), but authorship is returned to “Blake” in The Drama Recorded; or, Barker’s List of Plays, 1814 (see below).

Barker’s Complete List of Plays, 1803. BB #522C. James Cummins, Aug. online cat., quarter calf ($300). For another copy, see The Theatrical Remembrancer, 1788, above, and for comments see the entry immediately above.

The Drama Recorded; or, Barker’s List of Plays, 1814. BB #522D. SessaBks, Aug. online cat., title page boldly stamped in red, “Mercantile Library Philada.,” modern half buckram over 19th-century boards worn, calf spine label probably from an earlier binding ($200). For comments, see Barker’s Continuation of Egerton’s Theatrical Remembrancer, 1801, above.

E. Englantine, Memoirs of the Life of the Celebrated Mrs. Q, 1822. Ian Marr, Oct. cat. 7, #23, 19th-century calf, illus. (£450). The frontispiece is a reduced reengraving of “Mrs Q,” engraved by Blake after Villiers in 1820.

Annual Biography and Obituary for the Year 1828. EB, June, contemporary boards very worn, front cover missing, illus. ($14.99). Includes obituaries of Blake (BB #842) and Flaxman.

Catalogue of Engravings, by the Most Esteemed Artists, … Forming Part of the Stock of Moon, Boys, and Graves, 1829. BBS 285. Hanselled Books, Nov. online cat., modern half calf, binding illus. (£175 on Hanselled’s web site, but £140 via AbeBooks). Includes Blake’s engraving of “Romeo and Juliet” after John Opie, published c. 1802-03 in Boydell’s Graphic Illustrations of the Dramatic Works of Shakspeare (BB #437) and in Boydell’s ed. of The Dramatic Works of Shakspeare (BB #497), “Prints, 4s. Proofs, 7s.6d.” (p. 65). The pl. is also listed without price in the section of the cat. titled “BOYDELL’S SMALL SHAKSPEARE” (p. 159) and in the subject index, p. 204. All 3 listings name “Blake” as the engraver. “Boydell’s Small Plates” for Shakespeare, presumably a version of BB #437 including Blake’s pl., is offered in the section on “BOOKS AND BOOKS OF PRINTS,” £6.6s. for “modern impressions, half-bound,” and £8.8s. for “very old impressions, in sheets” (p. 188). The cat. also includes pls. after designs by Barry, Flaxman, Fuseli, Romney, and Stothard, and engravings by Parker and Linnell.

W. Blake, Songs of Innocence and of Experience, Pickering ed., 1839. Honey & Wax Booksellers, Oct. online cat., issue without “The Little Vagabond,” publisher’s cloth, spine faded, illus. ($9500).

W. Blake, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, Camden Hotten facsimile, 1868. CNY, 29 Oct., #793, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, publisher’s roan-backed cloth, illus. ($688 to John Windle for stock).

Allgemeine Familien Zeitung, no. 36, 1873. EB, Feb., illus. (offered at the “buy it now” prices of €24.80 unframed and €44.60 framed or “best offer”). The front page includes a wood engraving, signed “F. Bocourt” lower left and “L. Chapon” lower right, reproducing Schiavonetti’s engraving of Blake’s “Death’s Door” (reversed) from Blair’s The Grave. This is the same wood engraving by Léon Louis Chapon (1836-1918) published in M. W. Bürger, Histoire des peintres de toutes les écoles: école anglaise, 1863 (BB #1317, indicating that “Bürger” is a pseudonym for J. Thore [that is, Thoré]). The design may have been traced from Schiavonetti’s engraving or drawn on the block by Bocourt (probably Marie Firmin Bocourt, 1819-1904) and cut in the wood by Chapon.

W. Blake, Songs of Innocence, William Muir facsimile, 1885. Carpe Diem Books, April private offer, copy “0” with a presentation inscription by Muir to the editor of the Academy, letter by Muir to the editor laid in loose, publisher’s wrappers, later slipcase ($8500).

W. Blake, For the Sexes: The Gates of Paradise, pl. 14. BHL, 5 June, #15, illus. (£650). The auction cat. failed to point out that this is a leaf from the William Muir facsimile of 1888.

W. Blake, Songs of Innocence and of Experience, Quaritch facsimile, introduction by Edwin J. Ellis, hand-colored issue, 1893. CNY, 29 Oct., #794, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, contemporary calf with the “original cloth covers bound in at end,” illus. ($688 to John Windle for stock). EB, Nov., 1 leaf loose, half calf worn, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $3150).

W. Blake, Poetical Sketches, Vale Press, 1899. BL, 4 April, #116, 1 of 8 copies printed on vellum, illus. and “decoration” by Charles Ricketts, full morocco gilt with the “LH” initials of Laurence Hodson, binding illus. (£7000 to Bromer Booksellers; estimate £3500-5000); Bromer, July online cat. 36, no item # ($22,500).

“Mrs Q,” Blake after Villiers, 1906 facsimile. CL, 19 Sept., #293, wove paper, platemark 33.0 x 24.0 cm., with the companion print, “Windsor Castle” engraved by Maile, from the collection of “Professor Sir Albert Richardson, P.R.A.,” both framed, illus. (not sold; estimate £700-1000). The CL cat. entry initially offered these as originals, but a “saleroom notice” posted on the CL web site by 13 Sept. indicated that they are the 1906 facsimiles. Original impressions of “Mrs Q” have a platemark of 35.2 x 24.9 cm. Cheffins auction, Cambridge, 14 Nov., #385, “heavy laid paper,” stained, with the companion print, both elaborately framed, illus. (£300; estimate £70-100). Although offered by Cheffins as an original impression, this is very probably the 1906 facsimile. I have never seen an original on laid paper, but an example of the facsimile in my collection is on heavy laid paper.

Jerusalem (“And Did Those Feet in Ancient Time”). Stanzas from William Blake’s “Prophetic Books” Set to Music by C. Hubert H. Parry. Curwen Edition, no. 40009. London: J. Curwen & Sons, n.d. (c. 1916). EB, March-April, 2 conjugate leaves unbound as issued, pencil annotations on front cover, illus. (£2.75). The 1st ed. of Parry’s music for Blake’s “Jerusalem” lyric in the “Preface” to Milton a Poem. The publication date is based on the “Copyright 1916” statement printed in the 1944 reissue.

Thomas B. Harned, ed., The Letters of Anne Gilchrist and Walt Whitman, 1918. Antic Hay Books, Aug. online cat., publisher’s cloth and dust jacket ($75). Ed Conroy Bookseller, Aug. online cat., publisher’s cloth ($61.50). Between the Covers, Aug. online cat., publisher’s cloth worn ($50). Phyllis Tholin Books, Aug. online cat., publisher’s cloth worn ($12). In a letter of 2 May 1884, Gilchrist tells Whitman about a visit from Edward Dowden (poet and critic, 1843-1913) and spending “three hours together, talking of you & looking through Blake’s drawings” (225).

“A Dream of Thiralatha” (SP impression 1A) and The Song of Los, copy D, pl. 5, Frederick Hollyer color reproductions, datable to the 1920s. Justin Schiller, April New York Book Fair ($500 each).

W. Blake, Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience, William Muir facsimiles, 1927. Heritage Book Shop, June online cat., 2 vols., copy numbers not recorded, bookplate of A. Edward Newton, quarter morocco, original wrappers bound in ($3500). Probably copies no. 22 (Innocence) and 29 (Experience) in the Newton auction, Parke-Bernet, 17 April 1941, #182 ($60) and #183 ($70).

Eric Gill (British sculptor and calligrapher, 1882-1940), pamphlet with reproductions of Blake’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience, 1931. EB, June, 54 pp. of illus. bound in paper wrappers, the front cover inscribed by Gill “Songs of Innocence & Experience,” 1st leaf with a presentation inscription, “Denis T. [Gill’s son-in-law, Denis Tegetmeier] from EG 25, dec. 1931,” illus. (£390). The reproductions were taken from Facsimile of the Original Outlines before Colouring of the Songs of Innocence and of Experience, introduction by Edwin J. Ellis (London: Bernard Quaritch, 1893).

Craddock & Barnard, An Illustrated Catalogue of Engravings & Etchings, cat. 82, [1956]. Uncle Phil’s Books, July online cat., original wrappers (£8.50). Item 55 is the set of prepublication proofs of Blake’s Job engravings (£325) from George Richmond’s collection, acquired by Philip Hofer and now in the Houghton Library, Harvard University, accession no. pf Typ 6500.55.3.

William Blake’s Illustrations to the Bible, Trianon Press, 1957. BL, 3 Oct., #83, no. 18 of 20 copies with 5 proofs of 1 pl. (the frontispiece in this copy), publisher’s morocco, illus. (£1054).

W. Blake, Auguries of Innocence, illus. by Leonard Baskin, 1959. CNY, 29 Oct., #795, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, “this copy designated ‘printer’s copy’ and signed by Baskin,” presentation inscription from Baskin to “Charlotte & Arthur,” with 2 “proof engravings signed [apparently by Baskin] and inscribed to the Vershbows laid-in,” illus. ($1188).

Blake’s Circle and Followers

Works are listed under artists’ names in the following order: paintings and drawings sold in groups, single paintings and drawings, letters and manuscripts, separate pls., books by (or with pls. by) the artist.

BARRY, JAMES

Ancient Greek Battle Scene, attributed to Barry. Watercolor, 38.0 x 45.0 cm. Sheppards auction, Durrow, Ireland, 9 July, #120, illus. (no price information; estimate €1200-1800). An interesting design, but William Pressly does not believe that it is by Barry.

The Education of Achilles. Pen and ink over pencil, 35.0 x 27.0 cm., signed, datable to c. 1772. SL, 5 July, #354, with Standing Male in the Pose of Hercules, brown wash over black chalk on 2 sheets of wove paper, 38.4 x 21.2 cm., signed and inscribed “C. Bentley” lower right, datable to c. 1780, both illus. (£27,500; estimate £2500-3500).

Satan, Sin and Death: “Death and Sin Met by Satan on His Return from Earth.” Pencil, pen and ink, gray and brown washes with touches of white, 59.0 x 41.6 cm., inscribed on the backing leaf “Picture XXII Milton Gallery.” CNY, 31 Jan., #146, “possibly” the work sold “Christie’s, London, 10 April 1807, part of lot 54 (£4.6s. to Denham),” illus. ($47,500). Barry’s etching of the design is datable to c. 1792-95.

“A Grecian Harvest Home,” etching. Galerie Bassenge auction, Berlin, 28 Nov., #5335, 4th (final) st., illus. (€14,000; estimate €1800-2400). I am amazed at the prices that Barry’s prints have been fetching at auction; see “Job Reproved by His Friends” in Blake 46.4 (spring 2013).

BASIRE, JAMES (with an emphasis on pls. produced during Blake’s apprenticeship to Basire in the 1770s)

James Basire the Younger (engraver, 1769-1832, the son of Blake’s master). Manuscript journal, 1813-19, 68 leaves, with references to apprentices (for example, James Dix), sermons, trials, and executions. DW, 30 Jan., #337, illus. (£1100; estimate £200-300). The extensive cat. entry makes no reference to Blake or James Parker.

“The Siege of Boulogne by King Henry VIII. MDXLIV,” engraved by Basire after a “coeval painting” copied by Samuel Hieronymus Grimm, 1788. BL, 31 July, #96, with 6 unrelated prints, illus. (£140). At 59.5 x 169.0 cm., 1 of Basire’s largest pls.

“The Stoning of St. Stephen” after Raphael, etched by Richard Dalton, engraved by Basire, 1753. EB, Feb.-March, signed lower right “R Dalton del & Acqua forti fecit. J. Basire Junr. Sculp.,” illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of €49); same impression, March, illus. (€59).

Bryant, New System … of Ancient Mythology, 1774-76. See under Letterpress Books with Engravings by and after Blake, above.

Cook, A Voyage towards the South Pole, and round the World, 1777. Hordern House, Aug. online cat., 1 pl. only, “Captain James Cook, F.R.S.” engraved by Basire after William Hodges, illus. ($1450 Australian). Antipodean Books, Aug. online cat., 1 pl. only, “Captain James Cook, F.R.S.” after Hodges, 2 impressions ($750 and $475). EB, Aug., 1 pl. only, “The Landing at Mallicolo” engraved by Basire after Hodges, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $575).

Eighty-Two Prints, Engraved by F. Bartolozzi, &c., from the Original Drawings by Guercino, in the Collection of His Majesty, published by Boydell, n.d. (c. 1764?). EB, March-April, 6 pls. only (5 landscapes, 1 figure study), offered individually, illus. (all sold for prices between €18.50 and €51); April, 1 pl. only, a landscape, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of £39.50); 1 pl. only, “Saint Petronilla Mourned,” illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of €240); 1 pl. only, a landscape, apparently a proof before framing lines and letters, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of €120); 1 pl. only, a landscape, framed, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $449.99); 1 pl. only, a landscape, framed, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of £29.50); Dec., 1 pl. only, a landscape, marginal stains, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of €120).

Gray, Poems, 1775. Robert Temple, Aug. online cat., portrait frontispiece by Basire after W. Mason and B. Wilson, original boards worn ($515). EOS Buchantiquariat Benz, Aug. online cat., pl. only, illus. ($155).

Hamilton, Account of the Discoveries at Pompeii, 1777. BL, 3 Oct., #73, with 13 pls. by Basire, stains, later morocco, with Hamilton, Observations on Mount Vesuvius, 1773, and “another by Hamilton” (£868). EB, Nov., modern half morocco, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $2750).

Hollis, Memoirs of Thomas Hollis, 1780. Am Here Books, Aug. online cat., “magnificent large paper” copy apparently bound in 2 vols., original boards rebacked ($2750). Blake may have participated in the production of the 9 full-page pls. and 1 small vignette signed by Basire. In addition, Blake was interested in the portraits of John Milton in this work—see CP 117-18.

Monro, Works of Alexander Monro, 1781. GP, Oct. online cat., only the frontispiece portrait engraved by Basire, 1776, illus. (£120).

Rogers, Collection of Prints in Imitation of Drawings, 1778. EB, Jan., 1 pl. only, “A Monument” after Bernini, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of €30); 1 pl. only, “Sleep in the Arms of Night” after Passignano, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of €35); 1 pl. only, “Time” after Rysbrack, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of €30); March-April, 1 pl. only, “Moses Exposed” after Le Sueur, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of €35); same impression, April, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of €35); April, 1 pl. only, “Cupid with the Sword of Mars” after Carracci, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of €220); 1 pl. only, “The Immaculate Virgin” after Maratti, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of €280).

Stuart and Revett, Antiquities of Athens, 1762-1816. See under Letterpress Books with Engravings by and after Blake, above.

CALVERT, EDWARD

The Early Engravings of Edward Calvert, Carfax and Co., 1904. BL, 4 April, #286, 1 of 30 copies, “two sheets slightly spotted, not affecting image, unbound in original folder,” illus. (£6000; estimate £8000-12,000). This portfolio includes original impressions of 2 of Calvert’s 3 intaglio engravings, all 7 of his wood engravings, and his 2 lithographs. Another source for the 2 intaglio engravings and 6 of the wood engravings, A Memoir of Edward Calvert Artist by His Third Son, 1893, does not include original impressions of the lithographs.

CUMBERLAND, GEORGE

Cumberland, Lewina the Maid of Snowdon, bound with Cumberland, A Poem on the Landscapes of Great-Britain, both 1793. Justin Croft/Simon Beattie, Feb. cat. of “English Verse 1751-1800 Part I: A-G,” #189, modern quarter calf, illus. (£1800). This cat. ascribes all the pls. in both works to Cumberland, as their title pages indicate, but a note by George Cumberland, Jr., accompanying an impression in my collection of the tailpiece to Lewina, states that it was designed “Jointly with Thos Stothard R. A.” For other notes attributing this pl. to both men, see G. E. Bentley, Jr., A Bibliography of George Cumberland (1754-1848) (New York: Garland Publishing, 1975) 7n1.

FLAXMAN, JOHN

See also Flaxman under Letterpress Books with Engravings by and after Blake, above.

A group of 18 drawings, including 1 by Flaxman. SL, 5 July, #379, the largest drawing 25.7 x 39.4 cm., the Flaxman illus. (£2875). Flaxman’s pencil, pen and ink, and monochrome wash drawing (size not indicated) pictures a battle scene or its aftermath. The central male is winged and wears a helmet adorned with a serpent. David Bindman suggests that the subject may be taken from the Book of Enoch. If so, the winged figure could be the angel Gabriel, sent by “the Lord” to “destroy the children of fornication, the offspring of the Watchers, from among men; bring them forth, and excite them one against another. Let them perish by mutual slaughter; …” (The Book of Enoch, trans. Richard Laurence [Oxford: Oxford UP, 1821] 10.13).

Amphion and Zethus Delivering Their Mother Antiope from the Fury of Dirce and Lycus. Pencil, pen and ink, wash, 16.1 x 29.2 cm., signed “Flaxman, Roma, 1789.” Lowell Libson, Jan. cat. of “British Paintings & Works on Paper,” pp. 41-[43], illus. (not priced).

Ballet. Pencil, pen and ink, 9.0 x 10.8 cm., title inscribed in pencil lower right. Roseberys auction, West Norwood, London, 11 June, #704, attributed to “circle of John Flaxman,” illus. (£160); AH, Nov. online cat. 431, #20, firmly attributed to Flaxman, illus. (£475). I agree with Abbott and Holder’s attribution to Flaxman.

The Braschi Venus. Pencil and wash, 74.3 x 51.1 cm., datable to 1811. Lowell Libson, Jan. cat. of “British Paintings & Works on Paper,” pp. 38-40, illus. (not priced). Reported on Libson’s web site in Sept. to have been sold to “the Royal Academy of Arts, London.” A lithograph of the design by G. Childs, titled “Venus of Cindos—Praxiteles,” was published as pl. 22 in Flaxman, Lectures on Sculpture, 1829.

Design for the Tomb of Mary Ann Bosanquet. Pencil, 11.4 x 18.4 cm., datable to 1819-20. Canterbury auction, Canterbury, 16 April, #544, misidentified as a design for the tomb of “William Basanguet” and wrongly dated to “circa 1813,” foxed and stained, framed, illus. (£480). For a model of the tomb, see Margaret Whinney and Rupert Gunnis, The Collection of Models by John Flaxman R. A. at University College London (London: Athlone P, 1967) 29 #40 and pl. 3a.

Italian Woman with a Child. Monochrome wash, 13.5 x 11.8 cm. Grisebach auction, Berlin, 27 Nov., #100, illus. (not sold; estimate €9000-12,000). Previously offered Heim Gallery/Christopher Powney, spring 1976 “John Flaxman” cat., #58, illus. (£240).

John Flaxman and His Wife. A pair of Wedgwood circular portrait plaques, 14.0 cm. diameter, profiles on a pale blue ground. Woolley & Wallis auction, Salisbury, 30 April, #322, dated to “late 18th/early 19th century,” framed, illus. (£300). I suspect that these may be a good deal later than the date suggested by the auctioneer.

“Maternal Tenderness”: Memorial to Lady Fitzharris. Plaster cast, 68.0 cm. high, inscribed “Published as the act directs May[?] By Mr Flaxman and Mr Denman Buckingham Street Fitzroy Square,” datable to 1816. Lowell Libson, March online cat., from the Tulk family collection, illus. (price on request). Only 1 other cast is recorded, now in Sir John Soane’s Museum, London. Sold by Sept. to the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh.

Two Classical Figures Riding a Ram. Pen and ink, gray wash, 20.3 x 30.5 cm., datable to c. 1788. EB, Jan., inscribed “Flaxman—” on the damaged mount, illus. (£320). The subject is almost certainly the ram with the golden fleece carrying Phrixus (or Phrixos or Phryxus) and his sister Helle over the waves from Thebes to Colchis (see the Bibliotheca of Pseudo-Apollodorus, book 1, and Ovid’s Fasti, book 3). Helle never made it; she fell into a part of the sea subsequently called the Hellespont. David Bindman tells me that the design derives in part from a Roman mosaic Flaxman saw in Naples in 1788 and may be connected with a relief sculpture he tried to sell to the Earl of Bristol.

Young, Pensive Maiden with an Oil Lamp. Pen and ink, wash, 23.7 x 14.8 cm. Galerie Bassenge auction, Berlin, 31 May, #6423A, dated to c. 1790, illus. (€2800; estimate €600).

Autograph letter written in the 3rd person to the publisher Richard Phillips, 1 p., 28 Nov. 1814. BHL, 19 March, #124, with reference to Flaxman’s design for a monument to Admiral Nelson, illus. (£375).

Ticket for admission to a Royal Academy exhibition signed by Flaxman. BHL, 19 March, #115, with 2 admission tickets to Royal Academy lectures signed by Fuseli and a large group of letters and other materials related to British art in the early 19th century, letter by Philip De Loutherbourg illus. (£4000; estimate £1000-1500).

FUSELI, HENRY

Joseph Interpreting the Dreams of the Pharaoh’s Baker and Butler. Oil, 86.6 x 65.1 cm., inscribed on the stretcher “Given by Henry Fuseli Esq. to Lady Georgina North it being his first painting.” CL, 4 Dec., #178, illus. (£140,500; estimate £30,000-50,000). Previously offered CL, 2 Dec. 2008, #28, illus. (not sold; estimate £120,000-180,000).

Anon., Portrait of a Gentleman, Traditionally Believed to Be Heinrich Fuseli. Oil, 40.0 x 32.0 cm. Cheffins auction, Cambridge, 20 June, #498, illus. (not sold; estimate £600-800); 11 July, #388, illus. (£480).

Tickets for admission to Royal Academy lectures signed by Fuseli. See the ticket signed by Flaxman, above.

“The Night Mare,” engraved in stipple by “A. Zaffonato” and published by Suntach, 1795. EB, May, trimmed just outside the platemark, marginal foxing, illus. (€369). As the vendor on EB indicates, the engraver was the Italian Alessandro Zaffonato, born c. 1730 and active until c. 1795. For illus., see Blake 41.4 (spring 2008): 156. Speculations in the caption to the 2008 illus. that the engraver’s name was a punning pseudonym are wrong.

“Queen Katherine’s Dream,” engraved in stipple by Francesco Bartolozzi, 1788. EB, March, image showing wear, imprint trimmed off, light marginal stains, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of €52).

A Catalogue of the Small and Very Select Classical Library of the Late Henry Fuseli, SL, 22-25 July 1825. Doyle auction, New York, 25 Nov., #313, with 2 engraved portraits of Fuseli and a “manuscript account of Fuseli by the writer of Spanish travelogues Richard Ford [and] 1945 ownership signature of Ruthven Todd,” with 5 other sale cats., boards detached, illus. ($875).

LINNELL, JOHN (excluding later portraits)

Apple Gatherers, attributed to Linnell. Oil, 76.2 x 101.6 cm. Duke’s auction, Dorchester, 26 Sept., #265, illus. (£1700). Possibly by William Linnell.

A Boy Fishing. Oil, 43.0 x 26.5 cm., inscribed on the back “Belongs to H. M. Palmer / 13 July 1919” and “Contributed to the Loan Collection of S. Palmer’s / works by A. H. Palmer April 1923 / Shorham [sic] Period.” SL, 4 July, #204, with “a pencil study of a young boy seen through an open door, and other figures,” illus. (not sold; estimate £20,000-30,000). Previously sold SL, 21 Nov. 1984, #96, attributed to Linnell and Palmer, illus. (£35,200).

Castle Field, Reigate, attributed to Linnell. Watercolor, 25.0 x 36.5 cm. Stride & Son auction, Chichester, 26 July, #1766, illus. (£150).

The Cow Yard. Oil, 29.0 x 35.0 cm., signed. Tayler & Fletcher auction, Cheltenham, 20 June, #267, illus. (not sold; estimate £3000-4000). I suspect that this is a copy by someone other than Linnell of the much finer version, signed and dated 1831, in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, accession no. FA.134[O].

The Eel Pie House, Twickenham. Watercolor, 8.9 x 14.6 cm., signed and dated 1861. CSK, 5 Dec., #126, illus., with Tending Sheep, watercolor, 10.4 x 15.8 cm., signed and dated 1863 (not sold; estimate £800-1200).

Farm Workers Seated. Pencil, 8.5 x 11.0 cm., signed with initials. BHO, 21 Aug., #25, framed, illus. (withdrawn; estimate £200). Gorringes auction, Lewes, East Sussex, 5 Dec., #1731, illus. (£130).

Farm Worker, Young Child, and Sheep. Oil, 17.8 x 25.4 cm., signed. Keys auction, Norwich, 12 July, #108, illus. (not sold; estimate £400-500); 6 Dec., #78, illus. (not sold; estimate £400-500). The attribution is questionable.

Figure by a Stream at Dusk. Oil, 40.0 x 51.0 cm., signed. Woolley & Wallis auction, Salisbury, 4 Dec., #82, illus. (£1400; estimate £500-800).

A Landscape Scene with Trees. Watercolor, 20.3 x 35.6 cm., signed and dated 1876. Neals auction, Woodbridge, Suffolk, 26 June, #193, framed, illus. (£430).

Landscape with Shepherd and Cows. Oil, 35.6 x 45.7 cm., signed “J. Linnell.” Skinner auction, Boston, 20 Sept., #514, illus. ($960).

Pastoral Landscape with Shepherds Tending a Flock on a Hillside. Oil, 22.5 x 30.0 cm., signed. Anderson & Garland auction, Newcastle upon Tyne, 17 Sept., #354, framed, illus. (£1600).

Portrait of a Gentleman. Watercolor, 37.5 x 29.8 cm., signed and dated 1824. CSK, 9 April, #413, illus. (not sold; estimate £1000-1500).

Portrait of Thomas Chevalier. Pencil and sepia wash, 20.0 x 16.0 cm., signed and dated 1816. Bellmans auction, Billingshurst, Sussex, 22 May, #416, framed, illus. (withdrawn; estimate £150-250). Linnell’s engraving of this portrait is dated 1825.

Portrait of Thomas Hill. Oil, 33.0 x 25.4 cm., signed and dated 1831. EB, Jan., illus. ($1703.98). This is probably the portrait of Hill exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1832, #57. Linnell’s preliminary chalk drawing of Hill’s head and shoulders was sold CL, 10 July 1990, #29, illus. (£264).

Redhill Common, Surrey. Oil, 71.1 x 99.0 cm., signed and dated 1874. SNY, 2 Feb., #833, illus. (not sold; estimate $15,000-20,000).

Red Sunset. Oil, 81.0 x 106.0 cm., signed, inscribed on a label “A Red Sun-Set / Begun aug 8/77 / John Linnell Sn.” SL, 19 Nov., #15, illus. (not sold; estimate £8000-12,000). Previously sold from Linnell’s estate, CL, 14 March 1918, #13 (£65.2s.); previously offered SL, 9 July 2009, #30, illus. (not sold; estimate £20,000-30,000).

Saint John the Baptist. Oil, 72.5 x 92.0 cm., signed and dated 1867. BHO, 13 March, #204, illus. (£1750). Previously offered BHL, 17 April 2012, #72, illus. (not sold; estimate £4000-6000), and 23 Oct. 2012, #67, illus. (not sold; estimate £2000-3000).

Self Portrait. Oil, 30.0 x 22.0 cm., datable to the 1820s. SL, 5 July, #363, illus. (£10,625; estimate £4000-6000).

Shepherd and His Collie Guarding the Flock. Oil on panel, 52.1 x 68.6 cm., signed and dated 1832. CSK, 20 June, #132, illus. (£6250). The illus. shows several cracks in the panel.

Shepherd Driving His Flock down a Country Lane. Watercolor, 31.0 x 49.0 cm., signed. Boldon Galleries auction, East Boldon, Tyne and Wear, 6 March, #374, illus. (£340).

Shepherds at Dusk. Oil, 71.1 x 101.6 cm., signed and dated 1869. Matthews auction, Bray, Wicklow, Ireland, 3 Nov., sale of the contents of Violet Hill House, the “former residence of Mr. Sean Connery” in the 1970s, #204, illus. (€15,000; estimate €200-400).

Shoreham, Kent. Pencil, white chalk, and watercolor on buff paper, 27.9 x 43.6 cm., possibly executed in 1828, inscribed “J Linnell / Shoreham / Kent.” CL, 20 Nov., #283, from the “collection of the late Mrs T.S. Eliot,” illus. (£6250). Previously sold SL, 14 April 1994, #339, illus. (£14,950).

Two Anglers on a Fenland Waterway. Watercolor, 22.0 x 32.5 cm., signed. Anderson & Garland auction, Newcastle upon Tyne, 17 Sept., #152, framed, illus. (£500).

Two Sheep. Pencil, 9.0 x 14.0 cm., inscribed “From life J. Linnell.” BHO, 16 Oct., #78 (not sold; estimate £500-700); 30 Oct., #19, illus. (£225).

The Watering Place. Oil, 14.5 x 19.5 cm., signed. Charterhouse auction, Sherborne, Dorset, 4 July, #188, illus. (£600).

Welsh Scene, attributed to Linnell. Oil, 17.0 x 24.0 cm. Abbotts auction, Campsea Ashe, Suffolk, 13 March, #297, illus. (£190).

A Wooded River Landscape, attributed to Linnell. Watercolor, 7.6 x 12.1 cm., inscribed in pencil on the verso, “On the Thames near Putney after Sunset.” Brightwells auction, Leominster, 27 March, #470, illus. (£100). An early work, if indeed by Linnell.

Woodland Study. Oil, 11.4 x 21.0 cm. AH, Jan. online “Archive 2012” cat., no item #, from the collections of Mrs. Joan Linnell-Burton and Judy Egerton, illus. (£450).

The Wynd Cliff on the River Wye with Bristol Channel in the Distance, attributed to Linnell. Oil, 30.5 x 38.1 cm., signed indistinctly. EB, July and again in Aug.-Sept., illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of £5,950 or “best offer”); Oct., illus. (£740). Possibly by William Linnell.

Autograph letter signed by Mary Ann Linnell to her husband, John Linnell, 1 p., 5 Jan. 1825. BHL, 19 March, #128, with a reference to Linnell’s portrait engraving of Thomas Chevalier and with drawings by the Linnell children and a pencil sketch by J. Linnell of a mother and her children, illus. (not sold; greatly overestimated at £3000-4000); 19 June, #187 (£312; estimate £1000-1500).

“Sheep at Noon,” etching, 1818. EB, April, with the March 1818 imprint, wove leaf trimmed just outside the platemark to 14.1 x 22.9 cm., badly stained, particularly in the top margin, pasted to a backing mat, illus. (£103).

MORTIMER, JOHN HAMILTON

A Bacchanalian Dance. Oil, 122.6 x 168.2 cm., datable to c. 1770-75. CL, 2 July, #42, illus. (£97,875).

A Bandit Taking Up His Post. Oil, 41.2 x 30.4 cm., datable to the mid-1770s. Lowell Libson, Jan. cat. of “British Paintings & Works on Paper,” pp. 22-24, illus. (not priced). Previously sold CNY, 6 June 2012, #58, illus. ($21,250).

Caius Marius Seated amongst the Ruins of Carthage. Pen and ink, 41.0 x 35.6 cm., datable to c. 1774. SL, 5 July, #355, illus. (£56,250; estimate £6000-8000). The design was engraved by Robert Blyth in 1782.

Don Quixote at the Inn. Pen and ink, brown wash, 24.4 x 19.8 cm. BL, 12 June, #486, illus. (not sold; estimate £2000-3000); BG, 12 Sept., #203, illus. (not sold; estimate £1000-1500); 14 Nov., #36, illus. (not sold; estimate £500-600).

Reclining Man by a Stream in a Wooded Landscape. Pen and brown ink, 18.0 x 27.5 cm. Swann, 29 Jan., #296, illus. ($2040).

A Satyr Embracing a Woman. Pen and ink, oval, 17.0 x 13.6 cm. Pia Gallo, Master Drawings Fair, New York, 26 Jan.–2 Feb., illus. in the advertising booklet (not priced). Previously sold CNY, 26 Jan. 2012, #31, illus. ($3750). The design was engraved in 1780 by Charles Reuben Ryley.

Soldiers at Rest, attributed to Mortimer. Oil, 30.5 x 22.8 cm. CSK, 26 Feb., #365, illus. (£1500).

Study of a Recumbent Child. Pen and ink, wash, 10.5 x 17.3 cm., signed and dated March 1768. Pro Auction, Bath, online auction closing 14 June, #79D, illus. (not sold). Previously offered EB, Oct. 2007, titled Sleeping Baby, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $450).

“Elegy,” etching, from the suite of pls. dedicated to Sir Joshua Reynolds, 1778. GP, Oct. online cat., illus. (£120).

“Falstaff,” etching, 1776. BL, 31 July, #113, with “Bardolph” and “York” also from the set of twelve characters from Shakespeare, probably Palser printing of 1812 or 1816, with 3 etchings after Mortimer, “Falstaff” illus. (£70).

PALMER, SAMUEL

An Aqueduct in the Roman Campagna. Watercolor, 14.8 x 40.4 cm. signed on the verso, datable to 1843. CL, 2 July, #80, illus. (£8125). Previously offered SL, 10 July 1980, #178, illus. (not sold; estimate £3500-5000); previously sold CL, 20 Nov. 1984, #116, illus. (£4968), and BL, 14 Nov. 2012, #661, illus. (£3500).

Florence. Watercolor, 42.0 x 61.0 cm., datable to c. 1837-39. SL, 12 Nov., #225, illus. (not sold; highest bid £9500 on an estimate of £10,000-15,000). Previously sold SL, 21 March 2002, #195, illus. (£12,000).

The Near and the Distant: from Southern Italy. Watercolor and body color, 41.7 x 60.0 cm., signed, datable to 1870. SL, 3 July, #206, in its “original frame” with label reading “No. 2 / The near and the distant: from Southern. Italy. / Samuel Palmer, / Furze Hill House, Mead Vale, Red Hill / Surr[ey],” illus. (£97,300).

The North Devon Coast. Watercolor, body color, and black chalk, 18.7 x 26.9 cm., datable to c. 1849. SL, 3 July, #205, illus. (£23,750).

Old England’s Sunday Evening. Watercolor and body color, 30.0 x 70.0 cm., datable to 1874. SL, 19 Nov., #13, illus. (£266,500).

Oxen Ploughing at Sunset. Watercolor, body color, and red chalk, 40.7 x 28.0 cm., signed. CL, 20 Nov., from the “collection of the late Mrs T.S. Eliot,” illus. (£170,500). Previously sold SL, 15 July 1993, #118, illus. (£62,000).

Sheep in a Landscape, attributed to Palmer. Watercolor and body color, 24.0 x 41.5 cm. Stride & Son auction, Chichester, 26 July, #1402, illus. (£70).

View from Trentham Hall, attributed to Palmer. Watercolor, 12.0 x 17.5 cm., inscribed “July 17‘57 [possibly ‘67] / Trentham Hall.” Biddle & Webb auction, Birmingham, 13 Sept., #1234, badly stained and foxed, illus. (not sold; estimate £500-800).

Autograph letter signed to Leonard Valpy, 4 pp., 11 Dec. 1866. BL, 14 Dec. 2012, #43, discussing some of Palmer’s paintings and “Milton’s supposed preference for Paradise Regained to Paradise Lost,” illus. (£700).

A. H. Palmer, 5 letters, total of 14 pp., to Laurence W. Hodson concerning etchings by Samuel Palmer, 1892. BL, 4 April, #263, included in a large group of letters to Hodson by various correspondents (£420).

“The Early Ploughman,” etching. BHL, 5 June, #28, 7th st., trimmed inside the platemark, illus. (£562); 16 July, #29, “a working proof of an intermediate state between V and VIII” (but looks like 5th st. to me), laid paper, signed in pencil and inscribed “early state before the changes” lower left, illus. (£4750).

“The Herdsman’s Cottage,” etching. EB, April, 2nd st. from the Portfolio, 1872, full leaf, illus. ($425). BHL, 5 June, #31, 2nd st., illus. (£687). DW, 17 July, #317, 2nd st., illus. (£440). Duke’s auction, Dorchester, 26 Sept., #39, 2nd st., illus. (£180). See also Hamerton, Etching and Etchers, below.

“The Lonely Tower,” etching. BHL, 5 June, #29, 5th st., illus. (withdrawn; estimate £700-1000).

“The Morning of Life,” etching. EB, April, 7th st., illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of £990); same impression, June, illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of £1010). Perhaps 1 of the impressions offered on EB in 2012 at lower starting bids. BHL, 5 June, #30, 7th st., laid India, 1872 printing, illus. (£812).

“Opening the Fold,” etching. BHL, 20 Feb., #52, 8th st., illus. (£1750). Duke’s auction, Dorchester, 26 Sept., #55, probably 7th or 8th st., illus. (£160).

“The Sleeping Shepherd,” etching. Lyon & Turnbull auction, Edinburgh, 20 July, #212, with “The Lonely Tower,” signed in pencil and inscribed “Trial Proof,” “The Bellman” with marginal notes about alterations of the pl., “The Skylark,” “The Rising Moon,” “Opening the Fold” signed in pencil, “The Weary Ploughman,” “The Early Ploughman,” “The Herdsman’s Cottage,” and “The Morning of Life” trimmed to the image, sts. not recorded, illus. (£13,000; estimate £1500-2000). BHL, 18 Sept., #21, 4th st. on laid India, illus. (£625).

“The Willow,” etching. BHL, 5 June, #32, 3rd st., 1926 printing, illus. (not sold; estimate £500-700).

Etchings for the Art-Union of London, 1857. BL, 28 Feb., #368, 30 etchings on laid India, mounts foxed, loose in publisher’s cloth with spine worn away, illus. (£3500; estimate £400-600). Halls auction, Shrewsbury, 4 Dec., #401, lacking 2 pls. but with all 3 by Palmer, publisher’s cloth very worn, illus. (£3100; estimate £80-120). Includes Palmer’s etchings “The Rising Moon,” 7th st., “The Skylark,” 7th st., and “The Sleeping Shepherd,” 4th st.

Etchings for the Art-Union of London, 1872. BL, 28 Feb., #369, 20 etchings on laid India, mounts foxed, publisher’s cloth worn, illus. (£500). BHO, 10 Sept., #398, contents loose in publisher’s cloth, illus. (£475). Includes Palmer’s etching “The Morning of Life,” 7th st.

Hamerton, Etching and Etchers, 1880. CNY, 29 Oct., #851, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, publisher’s roan-backed cloth worn, illus. (not sold; highest bid $1500 on an estimate of $2000-3000). Includes Palmer’s etching “The Herdsman’s Cottage,” 2nd st.

Palmer, English Version of the Eclogues of Virgil, 1883. CNY, 29 Oct., #852, from the collection of Arthur and Charlotte Vershbow, large-paper copy, publisher’s vellum, illus. ($1063 to John Windle acting for a private collector).

RICHMOND, GEORGE (excluding most portraits)

The Agony in the Garden, after Raphael. Oil, 25.0 x 28.5 cm., signed. Bonhams Chester, 6 March, #395, “inscribed and dated 1875 verso,” illus. (£600). I suspect that this work may be a good deal earlier than the verso date.

The Lovers. Oil, 49.0 x 66.0 cm. Cheffins auction, Cambridge, 19 Sept., #568, framed, illus. (£6500). Previously sold CSK, 23 May 2002, #273, illus. (£3290).

A Sheet of Studies Including a Head Study of Samuel Palmer. Pencil, 20.4 x 15.9 cm., leaf with watermark “GM / 1838.” CSK, 9 April, #406, with 3 other leaves of sketches by Richmond, illus. (£500). For earlier attempts at sale, see the sales review for 2012 in Blake 46.4 (spring 2013).

A Shepherd Waking. Pencil and ink, 14.0 x 20.3 cm., datable to the 1820s. AH, Feb. online cat. 423, #40, “inscribed by the artist beneath the mount,” illus. (£1100). For earlier attempts at sale, see the sales review for 2012 in Blake 46.4 (spring 2013).

Sir William Blake Richmond’s Memorial to His Father, George Richmond R. A. Plaster relief, 31.4 x 40.6 cm., datable to 1896. Lowell Libson, Jan. cat. of “British Paintings & Works on Paper,” pp. 126-[27], illus. (not priced).

The Three Graces (recto), Figure Studies (verso). Pen and brown ink, leaf 25.4 x 21.1 cm. Swann, 29 Jan., #297, illus. (not sold; estimate $1500-2500).

Two Figure Studies. Pencil and wash, leaf 18.6 x 24.5 cm., inscribed lower right in pen and ink “From Taddeo—” (possibly copied after Taddeo Zuccaro). Swann, 29 Jan., #298, illus. ($450).

View of a Wooded Hillside. Oil, 18.0 x 32.5 cm. Roseberys auction, West Norwood, London, 19 Dec. 2012, #629, illus. (not sold; estimate £400-600); 9 Feb., #436, illus. (£240).

ROMNEY, GEORGE (excluding most portraits)

Eros & Psyche. Pen and ink, wash, 28.0 x 24.1 cm. Gorringes auction, Lewes, East Sussex, 4 July, #1407, from the Alfred de Pass and Truro Museum collections, illus. (£850).

Figure Studies. Pen and ink, 11.0 x 18.5 cm. Woolley & Wallis auction, Salisbury, 12 Dec. 2012, #291, from the collection of Iolo Williams, “paper yellowed,” illus. (not sold; estimate £800-1200).

Figure Studies. Pencil, 26.0 x 40.0 cm. Anderson & Garland auction, Newcastle upon Tyne, 17 Sept., #99, framed, illus. (£240).

Four Women in Two Poses. Pen and ink, 10.8 x 18.4 cm. Duke’s auction, Dorchester, 11 April, #50, possibly studies for Miranda in The Tempest, framed, illus. (£750).

John Howard Visiting a Lazaretto. Pencil, leaf 27.5 x 35.8 cm. Swann, 29 Jan., #293, “double-sided” (perhaps meaning that there is a similar sketch on the verso), illus. (not sold; estimate $2000-3000).

John Howard Visiting a Lazaretto. Pencil, leaf 20.0 x 15.2 cm. Swann, 29 Jan., #294, “double-sided” (perhaps meaning that there is a similar sketch on the verso), illus. (not sold; estimate $1500-2500).

John Howard Visiting the Lazaretto. Pencil, 15.7 x 19.1 cm. Guy Peppiatt, May cat., #1, illus. (£1800).

Motherly Figure Holding a Child, attributed to Romney. Pen and ink, 15.2 x 20.3 cm. Gardiner Houlgate auction, Bath, 21 March, #844, illus. (not sold); 27 June, #972, illus. (£60).

Prisoners in a Lazaretto. Pencil, pen and ink, gray wash, 26.6 x 49.4 cm. CL, 2 July, #69, illus. (not sold; estimate £8000-12,000).

Studies of Male Heads & Figures, recto and verso, attributed to Romney. Pencil, 15.2 x 20.3 cm. Aldridges auction, Bath, 30 July, #232, illus. (not sold; estimate £400-600).

Study of a Boy Reading. Oil, 40.7 x 35.6 cm. CSK, 5 July, #141, illus. (£15,625). This may be a profile of William Hayley’s son, Thomas Alphonso Hayley (1780-1800). Blake engraved Flaxman’s profile medallion portrait of the youth for Hayley’s Essay on Sculpture, 1800 (BB #467, pl. 3).

Study of a Mourning Female Figure. Pen and ink, brown wash over pencil, 32.5 x 18.7 cm. SL, 5 July, #326, illus. (£13,750; estimate £6000-8000).

Study of a Woman Holding Scales, a Small Child Clasping Her. Pen and ink, 11.9 x 7.1 cm., datable to the late 1770s. BHL, 30 Oct., #308, illus. (not sold; estimate £2000-3000).

Two Seated Female Figures. Pencil, 28.0 x 41.5 cm. Holloway’s auction, Banbury, 1 Oct., #253, with an unrelated drawing not by Romney, illus. (£200).

STOTHARD, THOMAS

Two monochrome wash drawings, oddly titled Othello and Saint by the auctioneer, sizes not recorded but probably small. Moore Allen & Innocent auction, Cirencester, 25 Oct., #155, illus. (not sold; estimate £200-300).

The Apparition. Oil, 21.0 x 15.9 cm. EB, July, from the collection of Gordon Heath, elaborately framed, illus. ($560); Nov., illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $650); Dec., illus. (no bids on a required minimum bid of $556).

Design for a Tented Garden Pavilion. Watercolor, 20.3 x 22.2 cm., inscribed “Stothard” on the mount. CL, 19 Sept., #363, illus. (£688).

The Franciscan Monk Asking Charity of Yorick, an illus. to Sterne, Sentimental Journey. Monochrome wash, 11.4 x 7.6 cm., datable to c. 1782. EB, Oct., wrongly said to have been engraved by Birrell and published in Harding’s ed. of Sentimental Journey, 1792, illus. (£149.95). James Heath’s engraving of the design was published in the Novelist’s Magazine, vol. 9 (London: Harrison, 1782), facing p. 5.

On the Way to Market, an Illustration to Oliver Goldsmith’s “The Deserted Village.” Watercolor, 12.6 x 9.0 cm. Lots Road auction, Chelsea, 10 March, #487, framed, illus. (not sold; estimate £250-350); Criterion auction, Wandsworth, 25 March, #141, illus. (not sold; estimate £150-210); EB, March-April, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of £1000 or “best offer” but quickly withdrawn); High Road auction, Chiswick, 9 April, #75, illus. (£300). The design was engraved by John Romney and published by Suttaby in an 1818 ed. of The Poetical Works of Oliver Goldsmith (Coxhead 118, describing the pl. but not identifying the book). Stothard’s oil painting of the same scene, but with a horizontal format and additional figures on the right, was offered SL, 23 Nov. 2006, #70, illus. (not sold; estimate £3000-4000).

The Punch Bowl. Oil, 22.9 x 15.2 cm. EB, July-Aug., from the collection of Gordon Heath, elaborately framed, illus. ($963).

Saul and the Witch of Endor. Oil, 35.5 x 29.9 cm. CSK, 25 June, #571, attributed to “Circle of Thomas Stothard,” illus. (not sold; estimate £800-1200). I do not believe that this painting is by Stothard, but it is an interesting essay in the sublime and probably of the period. Blake’s drawings of the same subject, The Witch of Endor: Saul and the Ghost of Samuel and Saul and the Ghost of Samuel, can be dated to c. 1775-80 (Butlin #74 recto and #75).

A Seated Ottoman Gentleman with Standing Female Attendants. Oil, 13.0 x 15.2 cm. Semley auction, Shaftesbury, 26 Jan., #65, illus. (not sold; estimate £200-300); 13 July, #211, illus. (no price information; estimate £100-200).Semley charges a fee to access sales results. I declined. Probably the design engraved as a book illus. and described by Coxhead as “a girl and a man sitting on a divan, her arm around his neck; attendants behind” (220). I have not been able to discover the text illustrated.

“The Letter,” an illus. to Frances Burney’s Cecilia, engraving by Joseph Strutt, 1792. EB, Nov., proof before title but with signatures and imprint, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of $497.50).

“The Lost Apple,” lithograph, 1803. Swann, 1 May, #286, on the original backing mount with aquatint border, illus. ($1680).

“Ruins of Palmyra,” etching/engraving signed “Stothard del.” and “[James] Heath sculp.,” design 12.5 x 17.6 cm., platemark 15.3 x 20.2 cm., on a leaf of wove paper 21.2 x 26.3 cm. EB, March, light marginal stains, illus. (£4.99 to Essick). Apparently a later st., without imprint but with framing lines added, of a pl. 1st published in William Frederick Martyn (pseudonym of William Fordyce Mavor), The Geographical Magazine; or, a New, Copious, Compleat, and Universal System of Geography, vol. 1 (London: Harrison and Co., 1785), pl. with a 1 May 1782 imprint facing 223. The later st. was very probably published in a book, as stabholes along the lower margin indicate, but I have not been able to identify the publication. Stothard also designed the frontispiece, engraved by Heath, for vol. 1 of the Geographical Magazine and delineated 2 further pls., “Ruins of Persepolis,” engraved by Andrew Birrell, and “View of the Porcelain Tower in Nankin in China,” engraved by William Angus. Vol. 2 of Martyn’s book, dated 1793, also contains a frontispiece designed by Stothard and engraved by Heath. Stothard very probably designed and executed drawings for the frontispieces, but the preliminary drawings for the 3 engraved views signed “Stothard del.” (delineavit, as distinct from invenit) were probably delineated by Stothard on the basis of images originally executed by artists who visited the sites pictured. Coxhead 168-69 lists only the 2 frontispieces and wrongly attributes their engraving to Blake; Bennett 66 correctly indicates “5 illus. by Stothard.”

“This Engraving, to Commemorate the Establishment of the British & Foreign Bible Society, Represents Britain Recommending the Sacred Records to the Attention of the Different Nations of the World,” engraved by William Henry Worthington and published by Robert Bowyer, 1816. EB, Nov., leaf of laid paper 42.8 x 53.9 cm., tears in margins, 1 extending into the title inscription, illus. ($75 to Essick). A large separate pl., image including inscriptions 39.2 x 49.0 cm. Not in Coxhead or Bennett.

G. Cumberland, Lewina the Maid of Snowdon, 1793. See under Cumberland, above.

Letters of Abelard and Eloisa. London: W. Lowndes et al., 1788. EB, March, contemporary calf worn, illus. (£45). Includes 1 pl. after Stothard, “Abelard & Eloisa,” engraved by William Sharp and dated 1788 in the imprint. This pl. 1st appeared in a 1787 issue by Lowndes and was used again in his 1802 reissue. Not in Coxhead or Bennett.

W. Martyn, The Geographical Magazine, 1785, 1793. Eric Chaim Kline, March online cat., 2 vols., some stains, “leather” very worn ($3750). EB, Aug., vol. 2 only, contemporary calf very worn, illus. (offered at the “buy it now” price of £795 or “best offer”). See “Ruins of Palmyra,” above, for discussion.

[Peregrine Phillips], A Diary Kept in an Excursion to Little Hampton, 1780. Chiswick Auctions, Hounslow, 27 Nov., #210, with a frontispiece engraved by James Heath after Stothard, foxed and stained, contemporary calf very worn, illus. (£300). Not in Coxhead or Bennett.

J. Thomson, The Works. London: J. Rivington and Sons, … T. Cadell, et al., 1788. EB, Aug.-Sept., 3 vols., contemporary calf worn, illus. (£78). Includes 3 pls. after Stothard illustrating Edward and Eleonora (engraved by John Keyse Sherwin), Tancred and Sigismunda (engraved by John Neagle), and Coriolanus (engraved by James Heath). All 3 pls. have 1788 imprints by “T. Cadell.” Coxhead 95-96 (describing the Coriolanus pl. as an illus. to Shakespeare) and 175 (the Edward and Eleonora pl.); the pl. of Tancred and Sigismunda not recorded. Apparently listed in Bennett 68, but only “Sigismunda” named. Neither Coxhead nor Bennett lists the book.

Appendix: New Information on Blake’s Engravings

Listed below are substantive additions or corrections to Robert N. Essick, The Separate Plates of William Blake: A Catalogue (1983), and Essick, William Blake’s Commercial Book Illustrations (1991).  Newly discovered impressions of previously recorded published sts. of Blake’s engravings are listed for only the rarer pls.

The Separate Plates of William Blake: A Catalogue

Pp. 17-20, “Job.” In Blake 44.4 (spring 2011): 116, 120, I noted my acquisition of the 2nd known impression (the so-called “Summers copy”) of the 1st st. of this pl. I can now give more information about its condition and history. The discovery of this impression was announced in Martin Butlin and Robin Hamlyn, “Tate Britain Reveals Nine New Blakes and Thirteen New Lines of Verse,” Blake 42.2 (fall 2008): 52-54. Butlin and Hamlyn state that “this impression has no inscriptions on the surviving area of margin below the intact image” and that this “suggests that the new copy is a proof before letters” (52). As illus. 1 accompanying their article shows, there is only a ragged thread margin below the center of the image where Blake’s signature (“Painted and Engraved by William Blake”) appears in the other 1st st. impression (1A, Keynes Family Trust, on deposit in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge). This margin measures 2.0 mm. over the initial “P” of “Painted,” the letter closest to the lower edge of the image. This just misses the top of the “P.” The 2.2 mm. margin between the image and the next highest letter, the “B” of “Blake,” also barely fails to reach its top. Elsewhere the even smaller margin is short of the tops of other letters by 0.2 mm. or more. The design itself is in the same st. as the portions of the Keynes impression not altered by its restoration, and thus there is no evidence that the Summers/Essick impression is in a st. different from the Keynes impression.

The original frame, dated by Butlin and Hamlyn to the “early to mid-nineteenth century” (52), includes some paper lining on its inner lip bearing a fragmentary letterpress text: “better done at no expense … allotted to the … really elicited eviden[ce] … th[e] adjustment of ….” This text matches, in wording, typography, spacing, and lineation, p. 145 of Jeremy Bentham, Justice and Codification Petitions (London: Robert Heward, 1829), thereby establishing a terminus a quo of 1829 for the frame.

Butlin and Hamlyn record a pencil inscription on the frame that they tentatively transcribe as “Bennett” (52). Infrared photography has revealed the inscription as “Bennett 4,” upper center right of the frame when viewed from the back. This inscription was probably written by the frame-maker as a record of who ordered the frame; perhaps “Bennett” had ordered 4 frames in all or the number was used to distinguish this customer from 3 others with the same surname. This purchaser of both the print and its frame may have been Lady Mary Elizabeth Bennett (1785-1861), the 5th child of the 4th Earl of Tankerville, Chillingham Castle, Northumberland. She was a student of John Linnell’s, taking from him lessons in both engraving and painting miniature portraits (see Alfred T. Story, The Life of John Linnell [London: Richard Bentley and Son, 1892] 1: 219). We know that Linnell was instrumental in selling impression 2C (2nd st.) of “Job” on behalf of Blake’s wife, Catherine; he may have also been involved in the sale of impression 2D to Thomas Chevalier or Charles Heathcote Tatham, both well known to Linnell. It seems likely that Linnell also played a role in selling the Summers/Essick impression for Blake’s wife in 1829 or at a slightly later date before her death in 1831. It is less likely, because of poor relations between Linnell and Frederick Tatham, that Linnell had anything to do with a sale after Tatham had acquired Blake’s stock of works upon Mrs. Blake’s death, nor is there any record of contact between Tatham and Lady Mary Bennett. Thus the tentative provenance for the Summers/Essick impression is as follows: William Blake, thence by inheritance to his wife, Catherine, upon his death in 1827; sold by Catherine Blake (with the assistance of John Linnell) to Lady Mary Elizabeth Bennett between 1829 and 1831; by inheritance through the Bennett family, or by sale(s) to other parties, until May or June 2004, when acquired by a Lincolnshire antiques dealer at a house sale; sold by him at the Kempton Market, Sunbury-on-Thames, to Gabriel Summers of London in June 2004; sold by Summers to Robert Essick, Nov. 2010, John Windle acting as agent. The print was cleaned and matted by early 2011, the original frame, stretcher, and backing canvas retained separately.

P. 55, “Enoch,” impression 1B. For the acquisition of this impression by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, see under Separate Plates and Plates in Series, above.

Pp. 61-62, “Chaucers Canterbury Pilgrims,” hand-colored impressions 2B and 2C. Either of these impressions may have been the 1 sold at Sotheby’s, 19 May 1866, lot 20 from the collection of Robert Arthington, “coloured by himself” (i.e., Blake), with “Stothard’s print of the same subject” (£1.9s. to “Hillis”?—perhaps an error for the dealer Ellis).

P. 118, “George Cumberland’s Card,” untraced impression 7. For the sale of this impression, see under Separate Plates and Plates in Series, above.

Pp. 139-41, “Zephyrus and Flora,” after Stothard, 1784. For a previously unrecorded impression, probably of the 1st st., see under Separate Plates and Plates in Series, above.

P. 180, “Edmund Pitts, Esqr.,” after James Earle. A 3rd untraced impression was offered by James Tregaskis, Caxton Head Catalogue no. 673, 19 July 1909, item 62 (25s.), and cat. no. 689, 18 July 1910, item 251 (25s.). This might be 1 of the traced impressions, 2D through 2H.

P. 196, “Mrs Q,” after Villiers, 1820, untraced impression 19. For the sale of what may be this impression, see under Separate Plates and Plates in Series, above.

William Blake’s Commercial Book Illustrations

P. 23, Josephus, Genuine and Complete Works. Four dates are listed for 4 issues of Josephus. At least 6 issues have now been recorded: BB issue A, BBS issue Ab, and BB issues B-E. These are tentatively dated as follows in BBS 228: 1785-87, 1787-88, 1788-89, 1789-90, 1791-92, and 1792-93. A 7th issue (call it Cb), not recorded in BB or BBS, would appear to fit chronologically between BB issues C and D—see Josephus under Letterpress Books with Engravings by and after Blake, above. The pls. in issue Cb are in the 2nd (1st Josephus) sts.

Pp. 43-44, The Original Works of William Hogarth, 1st proof st. of Blake’s pl. An impression of the etched proof, “inscribed by Blake ‘Beggars Opera,’” is listed in the collection of Berthold Wolpe in Geoffrey Keynes, Engravings by William Blake: The Separate Plates (Dublin: Emery Walker, 1956) 73. This impression is offered in Philip C. Duschnes, Nov. 1959 cat. 140, #57, “inscribed in Blake’s own hand, ‘Beggar’s Opera’” ($750), but is now untraced.

P. 61, James Earle, Practical Observations on the Operation for the Stone, 1793. At least 1 copy of the 1st ed., 1793, is bound with An Appendix to a Treatise on the Operation for the Stone (London: J. Johnson, 1796), heretofore found only with the 2nd ed. of Practical Observations, 1796, and its reissue in 1803. This copy (Essick collection) includes the 1st st. of pl. 3, inscribed “To face p. 8, Appendix,” misbound upside-down facing p. 80 of the 1793 text.