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drawing - Two caterpillars, a musical instrument and two fragments of Roman pottery

Two caterpillars, a musical instrument and two fragments of Roman pottery

  • Object:

    drawing

  • Date:

    late 19th century (drawn)

  • Artist/Maker:

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

  • Materials and Techniques:

    pencil on paper

  • Museum number:

    BP.371

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

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.

From natural history to archaeology, the various studies on this sheet reflect some of Beatrix Potter’s most significant interests. The two studies of caterpillars show the caterpillars of the privet hawk moth and puss moth; other close studies of the privet hawk moth and its caterpillar in the Linder Bequest date from the 1890s. The musical instrument in the centre of the sheet may be a bone pipe. The other studies are of Roman pottery fragments. In her journal entry for 9th July 1895, Potter describes showing some of her work, including her ‘Roman drawings’ to a knowledgeable gentleman who admired them. Potter stated: ‘He promised to meet me at the museum and tell me the names of some of my fossils.’

Physical description

A sheet of five closely observed pencil studies; if the paper is upright the Roman pottery fragment studies are at the top, with the musical instrument study in the centre and the caterpillar studies below.

Date

late 19th century (drawn)

Artist/maker

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

Materials and Techniques

pencil on paper

Dimensions

Height: 25.3 cm sheet, Width: 19.2 cm sheet

Object history note

Drawn by Beatrix Potter, probably in the late 19th century. 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

A sheet with pencil drawings of two caterpillars, a musical instrument (probably a bone pipe) and two fragments of Roman pottery, by Beatrix Potter, probably late 19th century; Linder Bequest cat. no. LB.699.

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

Hobbs, Anne Stevenson, and Joyce Irene Whalley, eds. Beatrix Potter: the V & A collection: the Leslie Linder bequest of Beatrix Potter material: watercolours, drawings, manuscripts, books, photographs and memorabilia. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1985. p.71; no.699
p.71; no.699
Hobbs, Anne Stevenson, and Joyce Irene Whalley, eds. Beatrix Potter: the V & A collection : the Leslie Linder bequest of Beatrix Potter material : watercolours, drawings, manuscripts, books, photographs and memorabilia. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1985.

Materials

Pencil; Paper

Techniques

Drawn

Subjects depicted

Musical instruments; Pottery; Caterpillars

Categories

Drawings

Production Type

Unique

Collection

National Art Library

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