William Hogarth, Industry and Idleness, plate 9

Industry and Idleness, plate 9

William Hogarth (1697 - 1764)

RA Collection: Art

The ninth 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. The original plates are now in the Thomas Ross Collection, England.

This plate, 'The Idle 'Prentice Betrayed by his Whore and Taken in a Night Cellar with his Accomplice' develops the previous plate depicting the criminal Tom Idle (17/3529). There he is in bed with a prostitute, the door barricaded for fear of apprehension. In this scene, set in 'The Blood Bowl House' in London's Blood Bowl Alley, Tom Idle divides the takings from a recent robbery with his one-eyed accomplice. Around him a fight its taking place and a corpse is being disposed of. The prostitute indicates Idle and his accomplice to a magistrate, who is about to apprehend them.

Object details

Industry and Idleness, plate 9
William Hogarth (1697 - 1764)
Published by
William Hogarth (1697 - 1764)
Object type

269 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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