- Museum number
Object: A Harlot's Progress, Plates 1-6
Object: The Life of a Woman
Series: A Harlot's Progress
Copy of plates 1-6 from Hogarth's 'Harlot's Progress':
Plate 1: A scene outside the Bell Inn; a country girl, Moll Hackabout, just arrived on the York Wagon, meets an extravagantly dressed bawd (Mother Needham); a clergyman on horseback fails to notice the encounter, but a lecherous old gentleman (Colonel Charteris) eyes the girl with anticipation.
Plate 2: A lavishly furnished bedroom; Moll distracts her wealthy Jewish protector by exposing a breast and at the same time tipping over a tea-table so that her lover can slip quietly out of the room; in the foreground a mask lies on a table, a pet monkey scampers away with a piece of lace and a black boy dressed in a feathered turban and carrying a silver kettle starts with horror as expensive porcelain is shattered; on the far wall are pictures of Old Testament subjects (Jonah IV.8 and 2 Samuel VI.1-5).
Plate 3: A shabby room in Drury Lane; Moll is rising late, attended by a serving-woman who has lost part of her nose to syphilis; in the background, the magistrate, John Gonson, enters quietly with officers to arrest her; pinned to the window frame are prints of Captain Mackheath (the hero of "The Beggar's Opera") and Dr Sacheverell (the High Anglican clergyman impeached in 1710), the hat-box of James Dalton, highwayman, rests above the bed, and one of several beer tankards on the floor carries the name of a local tavern.
Plate 4: Bridewell prison with inmates (including prostitutes and a card-player) beating hemp under the supervision of a warder holding a cane; Moll is still dressed in her finery, but a one-eyed female attendant fingers the lace lappet hanging from her cap and her erstwhile serving-woman is trying on her fashionable shoes and stockings; beyond, a man stands with his hands in a pillory.
Plate 5: A squalid room where Moll Hackabout, wrapped in a sheet, is dying while two doctors (Richard Rock and Jean Misaubin) argue over their remedies; her serving-woman calls for attention for the invalid, another woman rifles through a trunk, and a small boy turns a joint of meat roasting in front of the fire.
Plate 6: A dilapidated room with Moll's friends, mostly prostitutes, gathered around her open coffin; to right, a clergyman gropes beneath a woman's skirt, to left, the undertaker pays court to another who picks a handkerchief from his pocket; in the foreground sits Moll's small son playing with a spinning top.
All in reverse; play-bill for Royal Surrey Theatre.
- Production date
- 1832-1842 (c.)
Height: 565 millimetres (sheet)
Width: 455 millimetres (sheet)
- Bibliographic references
Paulson 1989 / Hogarth's Graphic Works: third edition (121, 122, 123, 124, 125, 126) (copy)
Paulson 1965/70 / Hogarth's graphic works: first complete edition (121, 122, 123, 124, 125, 126) (copy)
BM Satires / Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum (2044, 2059, 2073, 2088, 2104, 2119)
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number