MORE BRITISH BLAKE NOTES
Prophecy in England is not dead, according to the following notice seen recently in a London taxi:
CRIME AND BANDITRY, DISTRESS OF NATIONS, AND PERPLEXITY will continue to increase until the Bishops open Joanna Southcott’s Box of Sealed Writings.The notice is sponsored by The Panacea Society (Bedford, England) which was founded (according to their brochures) about 1916 to broadcast the ideas of “Eight Modern Prophets,” the first two of whom are Richard Brothers and Joanna Southcott. (She is said to have died “of grief, because the Child disappeared at the birth,” because it was only “the birth of the Child’s etheric body.”) They are also fostering “The ‘Whosoever’ Religion,” “The Last Religion for the Last Times,” based upon Joel 2.32: “Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered.”
Christie’s sold on 17 November 1970 a number of “Blake” works, including one (no. 140) called “Portrait of a man, said to be William Blake,” by G. Harlow, which had previously been sold at Sotheby’s on 29 July 1925, lot 147 (see Blake Records , p. 223), but I am told by those who have seen it that it had no evident connection with either Blake or Harlow. There was also in the sale a counterproof of the Visionary Head of Queen Eleanor (no. 30) and a Blake drawing of what may be Saul and David (no. 29).
Sotheby’s sold on 17 December 1970 Urizen [pl. 3] (no. 14) about the genuineness of which there is some difference of opinion.