Of the Fine Money all would like to have their Part …
Hogarth, William (1697 London 1764). Rakewell surrounded by Artists and Professors. Rich parlor scenery in the reception hall where eight persons circle around the new star and enjoy „the luck of his closer presence“ while in the background six more try to join in. Present in detail officer – French horn-player – dancing-master – fencing-master (Du Bois) – stock fighter/pugilist (James Figg; c. 1695 – 1734) – landscape gardener (Charles Bridgeman; 1690-1738) – jockey – pianist. Among those not yet allowed to enter tailor, seamstress, and poet. At the wall the Judgement of Paris and cock fight scenes. Etching. Inscribed: Invented &c by Wm. Hogarth & Publish’d According to Act of Parliament June ye. 25. 1735. / Plate 2d. 14⅛ × 16 in (35.8 × 40.8 cm).
The Rake’s Progress II. – Illustration Hogarth Catalogue Zurich, 1983, 24. – Somewhat palish. – Four quatrain captions. – Impression from the plate retouched by the royal engraver James Heath (1757 London 1834) about 1822 (“Even these impressions have become relatively rare today though”, Art Gallery Esslingen 1970; and Meyers Konv.-Lex., 4th ed., VIII , 625: “A fine edition”, esteemed also already by contemporary collectors of the rank of for instance an A. T. Stewart [Catalog of the Stewart Collection, New York 1887, 1221, “fine plates”]) on wide-margined sturdy paper.
“ The man … with whom Rakewell talks, and at whose sight it is barely possible not to think of something like cannons or powder and lead, is a so-called bravo, a fire-eater who fights for other people for cheap … a letter of introduction (is) signed: William Stab …
“ Behind the bravo stands the French horn-player … The letter of recommendation of the captain certainly benefits from the heroic hunting tone …
“ The man in the center of the sheet, who, with somewhat spread train, seems to attempt to defile in a kind of Southern=Cock=Pas past Rakewell, is a French dancing-master of that time … One sees the passion and the inflammable air of his nation lift him …
“ Behind the dancing-master stands Du Bois, a French fencing-master; a portrait. He is about to try a lively attack with the rapier at the air … The man is remarkable for his tragic end; he was … run through in a duel by an Irishman of the same name, likewise a fencing-master …
“ Even though the man here has no opponent in front of him … so instead he has one behind him who throws a look at him a world full of Du Bois would not parry, namely that of the quiet, calm contempt, based on the distinct awareness of high superiority. This quiet opponent … who with two considerable cudgels in his arm himself pretty much has the looks of a third one (pun in German where Bengel means both a cudgel and a rogue) … was called Figg, was the greatest pugilist of his time … With his fist he would have killed an ox, and with one of his battle-clubs (quarter-staff) a whole menagerie of Du Bois with one blow. This quiet connection of the British athlete with the French fencing-master certainly is one of the most fortunate; the British, strong, persistent oak, opposite to the fluttering, French aspen, the club of Hercules besides the rapier, and the lion besides the animal which crows …
“ … in conjunction with the Venus on the wall stands the old landscape gardener Bridgeman with the plan of a garden … Of this head one recognizes … that it is a portrait. How honest and good! probably the most honest man in the whole sheet …
“ In front of our hero a jockey kneels who in his service and with his horse has won a heavy silver bowl … Above stand the words: won at Epsom, and below the name of the horse Silly Tom. This is the use Hogarth makes of Rakewell’s first name … His horse is named Tommy, like He, lets itself be ridden by other people to their advantage, like He; would not do that if it were smarter, and only suffers it because it is a little silly, like He … ”
Offer no. 7,644 / EUR 199. (c. US$ 241.) + shipping
– – – The same in Cook’s smaller version without the caption here replaced by the series title. Inscribed: Pl. II. / Hogarth pinxt. / T. Cook sculpt. / Published by Longman, Hurst, Rees, & Orme, Novr. 1st. 1806. Subject size 5¾ × 6¾ in (14.5 × 17.3 cm). – Trimmed within the wide white platemark, the outer parts of which somewhat age-spotted on three sides.
Offer no. 8,867 / EUR 65. (c. US$ 79.) + shipping
– – – The same in engraving by Carl Heinrich Rahl (Hoffenheim 1779 – Vienna 1843). (1818/23.) Inscribed: 14. / Pl. 2. 8⅛ × 10½ in (20.7 × 26.6 cm).
Offer no. 7,645 / EUR 87. (c. US$ 105.) + shipping
– – – The same in engraving by Ernst Ludwig Riepenhausen (1765 Göttingen 1840, university engraver there). Inscribed: 14. / W. Hogarth inv & pinx 1735. E. R d sc. / Pl. 2. 8 × 9⅝ in (20.2 × 24.4 cm). – On especially strong paper, supposedly about 1850. – Riepenhausen’s engravings after Hogarth (“very estimable”, Nagler) belong to his chief work and are partly even preferred to Hogarth’s own engravings.
Offer no. 12,138 / EUR 148. (c. US$ 179.) + shipping
– – – The same by Riepenhausen as before, but on slightly toned minor paper. – Especially in the white lower margin weak age-spots. – Somewhat palish.
Offer no. 14,426 / EUR 148. (c. US$ 179.) + shipping
– – – The same in lithography. (1833/36.) Inscribed: 68. / Leben eines Liederlichen IItes Blatt. 9⅞ × 8¾ in (25 × 22.2 cm). – In the right wide white margin age-spots. – Extensive caption à la Lichtenberg in German.
Offer no. 12,139 / EUR 128. (c. US$ 155.) + shipping
„ Wegen der Eile – das Werk soll Anfang nächster Woche verschenkt werden – würden wir Kurierdienst bevorzugen … Der guten Ordnung halber hier unsere Bestätigung, dass Ihr Paket … wohlbehalten bei uns eingetroffen ist … Wir würden die Verpackung ungern öffnen, weil das gute Stück gleich wieder auf Reisen gehen soll … “
(Herr F. R., 29. Aug./2. Sep. 2013)