Anna Knowles, Poetry Scroll with Flowers - Original 1807 watercolour painting




An original 1807 watercolour painting, Anna Knowles Poetry Scroll with Flowers.

 A beautifully rendered watercolour painting, with graphite underdrawing, of a poetry scroll set amidst a garland of flowers within the outline of a decorative frame. There is a 'J. Whatman 1807' watermark in the lower centre.

Unsigned. Inscribed with an unfinished and unidentifiable poem in the centre scroll. Verso there is an additional inscription related to the sketchbook/collection: 'This book was bought at the auction sale at The Elms, Rustington, Sussex in the month of July. Agnes Yule, St. Clare's House, Rustington, Sussex'.
Minor foxing and age toning, particularly around the edges, as shown. Vertical crease along the right side, with an additional crease to the upper right corner. Pinhole damage throughout the upper half of the image, particularly in the upper centre, the centre right edge, and along the top of the decorative graphite frame.
20.9cm x 27.4cm.
Unframed.

This work is one of an early-19th century collection of drawings and watercolours that came to us bearing the inscription ‘Anna Knowles, Englefield Green, 24 June 1810’. The Knowles family appears to have been entrenched in Englefield Green in Surrey for some generations, and had interesting connections with the satirical writer Thomas Love Peacock, and by extension, Percy Bysshe Shelley, who was a close confidante of Peacock’s.

The majority of the works in the collection appear to be by the hand of Anna herself, who was born in 1790 and married one of Peacock’s schoolmates, Joseph Gulston, in 1809. Interestingly, however, one painting is by the hand of Anna’s sister Cecilia (whose married name was Cecilia Gidoin Jenkins ) – who, it has recently been discovered, was the famous author of at least ten popular books, such as ‘Miss Alymer' and ‘The Smiths: A Novel’, published anonymously in the first half of the century. Her most well known work - the three volume 'Wedlock: Or Yesterday and Today' - provides a detailed account of her relationship with Thomas Love Peacock, who supposedly proposed to her at one point, and of their joint interactions with Shelley.

Text copyright © 2017 Somerset & Wood Fine Art Ltd. All rights reserved.

Product code: JH-553


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