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Samuel Palmer, The Sleeping Shepherd - Early Morning, etching on chine collé

The Sleeping Shepherd - Early Morning

  • Endymion the Shepherd Boy Asleep on Mt Latmos

    Endymion the Shepherd Boy Asleep on Mt Latmos

 

Height: 29.000 cm
Width: 21.700 cm

PD 1872-5-11-984

On loan to

    Samuel Palmer, The Sleeping Shepherd - Early Morning, etching on chine collé

    London, about AD 1854-57

    Samuel Palmer (1805-81) was one of Britain's greatest artists. In 1850, at the age of forty-five, he took up etching. In the same year he was elected to membership of the Etching Club, and he continued to work in this medium for the rest of his life. Palmer worked his plates elaborately, achieving rich and complex effects. He was also very demanding at the printers at the production stage. One printer complained he would 'sooner see the Devil himself than Palmer with a Plate to proof'.

    At the meeting of the Etching Club on 4 November 1854 Palmer reported that he had new works in progress; this plate appears to have been one of them. He often painted sleeping shepherds during his career. He may have been inspired by the sculpture of Endymion the Shepherd Boy Asleep on Mt Latmos shown here, made in the late second century AD and found at Roma Vecchia, Rome. He visited it many times at the British Museum, where it was on display from the late eighteenth century.

    W. Vaughan, E. Barker and C. Harrison, Samuel Palmer, 1805-1881: visi (London, The British Museum Press, 2005)

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