William Hogarth

William Hogarth- "A Harlot's Progress" Plate 3 Etching First Created 1732





Etching from the series titled "A Harlots Progress" by William Hogarth. The series consists of six paintings and engravings. The story is about a woman named M. Hackabout who arrived in London and started working as a prostitute. The third plate is of her getting arrest for her choice in profession. The series is a satirical story that emphasizes the dangers of being a prostitute and the health risks that come from it. In 18th century engraving, the detail of the black mole on women and men's face is a symbol of the deadly venereal disease, syphilis. In this plate, Hackabout has already contracted the disease and that is why the black dot is visible on her forehead as well as her madam's. In 1828, William Innell Clement published Harlot's Progress in columns on a single page of his newspaper Bell's Life in London #330. The detail with the cross seen in earlier reproductions of the engraving.

Artist Biography

William Hogarth ( 10 November 1697 – 26 October 1764) was an English painter, printmaker, pictorial satirist, social critic, and editorial cartoonist. His work ranged from realistic portraiture to comic strip-like series of pictures called "modern moral subjects", perhaps best known to be his moral series A Harlot's Progress, A Rake's Progress and Marriage A-la-Mode. Knowledge of his work is so pervasive that satirical political illustrations in this style are often referred to as "Hogarthian". Hogarth was born in London to a lower-middle-class family. In his youth, he took up an apprenticeship where he specialized in engraving. His father underwent periods of mixed fortune and was at one time imprisoned in lieu of outstanding debts; an event that is thought to have informed William's paintings and prints with a hard edge. Influenced by French and Italian painting and engraving, Hogarth's works are mostly satirical caricatures, sometimes bawdily sexual, mostly of the first rank of realistic portraiture. They became widely popular and mass-produced via prints in his lifetime, and he was by far the most significant English artist of his generation. Charles Lamb deemed Hogarth's images to be books, filled with "the teeming, fruitful, suggestive meaning of words. Other pictures we look at; his pictures we read."

Dimensions With Frame

H 20 in. x W 23 in. x D 1 in.

Dimensions Without Frame

H 14.5 in x W 16.5 in.