William Hogarth, Industry and Idleness, plate 4

Industry and Idleness, plate 4

William Hogarth (1697 - 1764)

RA Collection: Art

The fourth plate of William Hogarth's series of twelve prints Industry and Idleness, which the artist 'calculated for the use & Instruction of youth'. The set shows the consequences in later life of the contrasting behaviours of two apprentices in the same weaver's workshop, with each scene accompanied by scriptural passages (mostly from Proverbs). With this set Hogarth wanted to appeal to the market for popular prints rather than an exclusive, high-end audience (as in the case of Marriage A-la-Mode, published shortly before), and printed impressions on cheap paper for sale at all of London's print shops. (This may be one reason why most of the prints only went through two or three states, as opposed to the various states of Marriage A-la-Mode which carried varying levels of desirability. The original plates are now in the Thomas Ross Collection, England.

This plate, 'The Industrious 'Prentice a Favourite and Entrusted by his Master', shows the industrious apprentice Goodchild with his master, holding a daybook, having been elevated above the manual labour he carried out in plate 1 (17/3499). Goodchild is on his way to succeeding his master as owner of the business.

Object details

Industry and Idleness, plate 4
William Hogarth (1697 - 1764)
Published by
William Hogarth (1697 - 1764)
Object type

268 mm x 351 mm

Royal Academy of Arts
Object number
This image is from a book

Hogarth's prints. Vol. I. - [s.l.]: [n.d.]

Click here to view the book

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