Mrs Q. : Stipple etching/engraving with mezzotint, engraved by William Blake.

London: I. Barrow, St. Pancras, London, 1820. Plate mark 35.2 x 24.9 cm, Image size 29.4 x 22.9 cm. Paper size approx 40.6 x 28.8 cm. Back of frame giving provenance, with Christie's auction ticket showing sale on 16th April 1900 to Vaughan for 37 guineas. Colour printed with brown and flesh tones to hair, face, neck, and hands, plus a blue waist sash. Age dusted across background, but colouring of the face and dress detail still strong and clear. Inverted "V" shaped repair to what appears to be a tear to the paper above and to the right of Mrs Q : fairly minimal but a couple of small specks of paper loss show the white mounting board below and could benefit from a professional repair. A previous frame mount created small dust lines round the title and imprints below the image where it was cut away to show these. The portrait is of Harriet Quintin, the Prince Regent's mistress, and featured in E. Eglantine's "Memoirs of the Life of the Celebrated Mrs Q", London 1822. Believed to be the portrait Jane Austen referred to as precisely how she imagined her character Jane Bennet to look in "Pride and Prejudice" (letter to her sister, 24 May 1813). See Essick : The Separate Plates of William Blake, p 191. Second state, as usual. The auction sale is not noted in Essick's list of untraced copies, but the documentation looks convincing enough, as does the print. (Item Id: 108729)

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