He marries a rich old widow

description belowCopy in reverse of the first state of Plate 5 of Hogarth’s ‘The Rake’s Progress’ (Paulson 136): Tom and a wealthy old woman are being married in the dilapidated church of St. Marylebone. The bride has only one eye and growths on her forehead; the IHS on the wall behind her serve as a mock halo. In contrast the old woman is attended by a beautiful young woman who has already caught Tom’s eye. In the background on the left, the elderly pew opener pushes Sarah Young, carrying Tom’s child in her arms, and Sarah’s mother; she shakes her keys in their faces to prevent them from entering the church to stop the marriage. Two dogs in the lower left of the image mirror the courtship of Tom and his bride; the courted dog has only one eye. The clergyman is assisted at the altar by a clerk, and a charity-boy kneels at the bride’s feet offering a hassock. The Poor Box on the left is covered with a cobweb; there is a crack down the center of the slab with the Commandments on the wall behind the clergyman.

  • Title: He marries a rich old widow [graphic].
  • Publication: [London] : Publish’d wth. [the] consent of Mrs. Hogarth, by Henry Parker, at No. 82 in Cornhill, March 25, 1768.

Catalog Record

Hogarth 768.03.25.05+ Box 210

Acquired December 2019

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