William Hogarth, The Rake’s Progress Plate 4, The Arrest
From Hogarth’s A Rake’s Progress which tells the story of the fictional Tom Rakewell from a series of eight paintings completed in 1733. The first series of prints were issued in 1735. This one is from the G.G. and J. Robinson edition dated 1796. The expert coloring was done undoubtedly in the first half of the 19th or shortly after being issued.
Tom has squandered his fortune. On the way to the Queen’s birthday reception at St James’ Palace, he narrowly escapes arrest for debt. He is saved by the loyal Sarah Young, now a milliner, who pays his bail money with her meagre earnings. It is Queen Caroline’s birthday – also St David’s Day (1st March) – the two bailiffs wear leeks in their hats to mark the occasion. A street urchin steals Tom’s gold-topped cane, while a lamplighter, distracted by the commotion, accidentally pours oil on Tom’s wig.
Very Good+ Most mild defects would be hidden by a mat and others not noticeable unless seen with a raking light
16.5" X 22.75" sheet size, 14" X 16" plate size