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Lithograph - Print Collection

Print Collection

  • Object:


  • Date:

    circa 1897 (drawn)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Rothenstein, William (Sir), born 1872 - died 1945 (artist)

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This profile sketch of the actress Ellen Terry (1847-1928) by William Rothenstein (1872-1945), shows her seated, head rested on her left hand, gazing away from the viewer.
It has been signed by Ellen Terry 'Your loving friend', January 1898. She has also added quotations and phrases which seem to refer to personal anecdotes such as 'What a fretful cook!' and a quote from Joseph Henry Shorthouse (1834–1903) "Nothing but the infinite pity is sufficient for the infinite pathos of human life".

Physical description

A three quarter length pencil sketch of the actress Ellen Terry seated in profile. Her head is resting on her left hand, the other in her lap, holding a letter. She is wearing a dress that is gathered at the waist with loose sleeves and a wide, frilled neckline. Her hair is up and she is wearing a string of beads around her neck.


circa 1897 (drawn)


Rothenstein, William (Sir), born 1872 - died 1945 (artist)

Marks and inscriptions

What a fretful Cook!/E.T.
Handwritten inscription on a scrap of paper attached to the bottom left hand corner of the sketch

January - 1898=
Handwritten inscription written at an angle (sloping left to right) at the bottom left of the sketch

Your loving friend/Ellen Terry=
Handwritten inscription, at an angle (sloping left to right). Signature of the sitter.

"Nothing but/the infinite pity/is sufficient for/the infinite pathos/of human life"/(Shorthouse=)
Handwritten inscription above the bottom right hand corner of the sketch

Small inscription, most probably intials of the artist and date of execution


Height: 31.6 cm, Width: 25.4 cm

Object history note

Given by Mr. John Smyth

Descriptive line

Lithograph of the actress Ellen Terry by William Rothenstein (circa 1898)


Pencil; Paper


Prints; Entertainment & Leisure


Theatre and Performance Collection

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