The Beggars Opera, Act III: in The Original and Genuine Works of William Hogarth.
London: Boydell and Company, c.1795. Oblong large folio on wove paper (plate mark 583 x 455 mm on sheet 650 x 490 mm). An exceptionally fine, dark impression on bright paper, with the original wide margins untrimmed. Third and best state (of seven, see below) of the single plate Blake engraved for Hogarths Works, first published by Boydell in 1790, this state appearing in the second, undated edition c. 1795. It was the last state of the plate before hands other than Blake touched up the plate. A remarkably crisp and brilliant impression of Blakes richly detailed rendition of Hogarths painting showing the famous scene in which Macheath the highwayman stands chained, under sentence of death, between his two lovers, the jailers daughter Lucy Lockit, and the lawyers daughter, Polly Peachum. The plate was next used for an 1822 edition by which time several small changes had been made by another engraver. Bentley, Blake Books, 475 I. Essick, William Blakes Commercial Book Illustrations, XX.
(Item Id: 107769)