Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

drawing - A white mouse in a four-poster bed
  • A white mouse in a four-poster bed
    Potter, Beatrix, born 1866 - died 1943 Beatrix Potter
  • Enlarge image

A white mouse in a four-poster bed

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Long Melford (made)

  • Date:

    26/10/1901 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Potter, Beatrix, born 1866 - died 1943
    Beatrix Potter (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Watercolour and pen-and-ink

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Beatrix Potter (1866-1943) left this watercolour in the bedroom she slept in during one of her visits to Melford Hall, Long Melford, Suffolk in October 1901. The mouse is meant to be a representation of Potter tucked up comfortably in bed, alluding to the fact that she enjoyed her stay. She would often travel with her entourage of animals and the children of the family would look forward to seeing which pets accompanied her each visit.

Melford Hall, Suffolk, was the home of Beatrix Potter's cousin Ethel Hyde-Parker. Beatrix visited many times as a break from her London family home.

Beatrix Potter (1866-1943) is one of the world's best-loved children's authors and illustrators. She wrote the majority of the twenty-three original Peter Rabbit books between 1901 and 1913. The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Frederick Warne, 1902) is her most famous and best-loved tale.

Physical description

A white mouse is depicted tucked-in, sleeping with its head on a large plumped up pillow in a four-poster bed, its tail hanging out the end towards the left-hand side of the picture. The bed has yellow hangings and the quilt is pink. There is a brown table to the right in the foreground and other details of the room such as pictures, a chest of drawers and the door are depicted in grey wash.

Place of Origin

Long Melford (made)


26/10/1901 (made)


Potter, Beatrix, born 1866 - died 1943
Beatrix Potter (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Watercolour and pen-and-ink

Marks and inscriptions

'Oct 26th 01'
Bottom right-hand corner.


height: 120 mm, width: 200 mm

Object history note

Drawn by Beatrix Potter on 26 October 1901 at Melford Hall, Suffolk, the house of her cousin Ethel Hyde-Parker. Beatrix left the drawing in the bedroom for Stephanie Hyde-Parker on her departure from the house. the bed had yellow hangings. Acquired by the V&A from Leslie Linder (1904-1973) in 1973 as part of the Linder Bequest, a collection of ca. 2150 watercolours, drawings, literary manuscripts, correspondence, books, photographs, and other memorabilia associated with Beatrix Potter and her family.

Descriptive line

Watercolour drawing of a mouse sleeping in a four-poster bed at Melford Hall; drawn by Beatrix Potter 26 October 1901; Linder Bequest cat. no: LB.1024.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Brief catalogue entry, no. 1024.
'Hobbs and Whalley, Beatrix Potter : the V&A Collection, London, 1985'


Water-colour; Ink; Paper fiber

Subjects depicted

Tester beds; Table; Mouse; Chest of drawers; Door; Bed



Production Type



National Art Library

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.