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Keep within Compass and you shall be sure, to avoid many troubles which others endure

  • Object type

  • Museum number


  • Title (object)

    • Keep within Compass and you shall be sure, to avoid many troubles which others endure
  • Description

    A companion print to BMSat 6903. A young woman stands within a compass inscribed 'Fear God', holding an open book inscribed 'The Pleasures of Imagination Realized'. At her feet is an open chest full of guineas from which hang bank-notes and jewels; it is inscribed 'The Reward of Virtue'. A small dog stands beside her. In the background (right) is a country house, on the left farm-buildings and haystacks. The four corners are filled (as in BMSat 6903) with the disasters which beset the woman who does not 'keep within compass'. (1) A woman weeps dejectedly with cards and an empty purse on the ground at her feet. (2) A drunken woman lets an infant fall from her arms; on the wall is a torn print inscribed 'Domestic Happiness'. (3) A woman is being conducted to the watch-house by two watchmen, one with his lantern, the other with a rattle. (4) She beats hemp in Bridewell, a man standing behind her with a whip, as in Hogarth's 'Harlot's Progress'. The words round the circle are the same as in BMSat 6903. Beneath the circle is inscribed 'Prudence produceth esteem'. Below the design four verses are engraved, the first:

    'Instead of Cards my Fair-one look,
    (I beg you'll take it kind)
    Into some learned Author's Book,
    And cultivate your mind.' 1785
    Mezzotint with hand-colouring


  • Producer name

  • School/style

  • Date

    • 1785
  • Production place

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 350 millimetres
    • Width: 249 millimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Content

        Lettered with the first three words of the title at the top and "Prudence produceth Esteem" below followed by four verses of four lines; and with the whole title around the circumference of the circle; with title below and publication line "Printed for & Sold by Carington Bowles No.69 in St Paul's Church Yard London". Numbered bl 560
  • Curator's comments

    (Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', VI, 1938)
    The original water-colour is in the Print Room; the design in the circle, but not the corner designs, reversed. Reproduction, 'Apollo', xiv. 100 (Aug. 1931).

    (Supplementary information)
    A companion pair to BMSat 6903.


  • Bibliography

    • Bowles/Bowles & Carver Posture Mezzotints 560 bibliographic details
    • BM Satires 6907 bibliographic details
    • Chaloner Smith 1883 undescribed bibliographic details
  • Location

    Not on display (Caricatures III p.63)

  • Exhibition history

    2000 Oct-Dec, Cambridge, Fitzwilliam Museum, Popular Print in England
    2001 Feb-Apr, Glasgow, Hunterian AG, Popular Print in England
    2001 Apr-Jun, Manchester, Whitworth AG, Popular Print in England
    2001 Jun-Aug, Bradford, Cartwright Hall, Popular Print in England

  • Subjects

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date


  • Department

    Prints & Drawings

  • Registration number


FOR DESCRIPTION SEE GEORGE (BMSat).  1785  Mezzotint with hand-colouring

FOR DESCRIPTION SEE GEORGE (BMSat). 1785 Mezzotint with hand-colouring

Image description



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Object reference number: PPA146728

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