Design for a sword hilt, ca. 1820
Thomas Stothard RA (1755 - 1834)
RA Collection: Art
A pen and ink design for a decorative sword hilt with the handle consisting of a female figure in flowing drapery and a suit of classical armour above. Stothard drew the design first in pencil and then went over it in pen and ink. On the top left corner is a further study for the handle, seen from the front, in pencil.
Stothard produced many designs for silverwork, particularly in the latter part of his career, after 1800. He was a designer for the firm of Rundell and Bridge and some of his designs were executed by the well-known silversmith Paul Storr. It is not known whether this sword hilt was ever made.
This work comes from one of sixteen volumes of Royal Academy Annual Exhibition catalogues that were collected and extra-illustrated by the lawyer and antiquarian Edward Basil Jupp F.S.A. (1812 - 1877). The catalogues span the period from the first annual exhibition in 1769 up to 1875. Jupp added drawings, prints, letters and autographs by, or referring to, Academicians and other exhibitors at the Academy's annual exhibition.
E.B. Jupp was a solicitor who married Eliza Kay, daughter of the architect William Porden Kay. He was a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and a clerk of the Carpenters' Company, of which he published a history. Jupp amassed a large collection of paintings by British and Dutch artists, drawings, prints, books and porcelain most of which was sold after his death, at Christie's in February 1878.
Many of the drawings in Jupp's Royal Academy extra-illustrated volumes were bought from art sales during the 1860s. He was also acquainted with a number of contemporary artists and several drawings in the later volumes (along with many of the letters and autographs) were sent from the artists themselves.
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