Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

Ring a-Ring o' Rosies

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (made)

  • Date:

    ca.1900 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Cubitt, Edith Alice (artist)
    Nister, Ernest, born 1842 - died 1909 (publisher)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pen and ink and watercolour on card

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Ernest Nister (1842-1909) began his publishing career in 1885 when he acquired a lithographic workshop in Nürnberg and printed books for London publishers. In 1888 he became a publisher in his own right with offices at 24 St. Bride Street, London. He appointed the writer and editor, Robert Ellice Mack, as director.

Nister specialised in high quality colour printing for children in the last quarter of the 19th century. Movable books with various mechanisms became his speciality after 1890 (when be published his first stand-up book) but he also produced numerous picture books, annuals, poetry, nursery rhymes, calendars and greetings cards. He worked with a core of writers, including Clifton Bingham and Robert Ellice Mack, and illustrators, in particular Eveline Lance, Harriett M. Bennett, Edith A. Cubitt and Rosa Petherick.

Physical description

Pen and ink and watercolour drawing on stiff card depicting the nursery rhyme, Ring a-Ring o' Rosies. Six children hold hands in a field, forming a ring. Four of the children are falling to the ground. The children wear brightly coloured clothes, some wear hats or bows in their hair. In the distance a gate in the hedge leads to further fields. Mounted on card.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (made)


ca.1900 (made)


Cubitt, Edith Alice (artist)
Nister, Ernest, born 1842 - died 1909 (publisher)

Materials and Techniques

Pen and ink and watercolour on card

Marks and inscriptions

Bookplate on verso reads: 'From the Library of Anne Renier and F.G. Renier'

Inscribed in ink on verso: 'Ring a Ring of Roses / E.A. Cubitt'

Inscribed in blue crayon on verso: 'XXVII 12/12 / 8569' and '9'

Inscribed in ink on mount edge verso: '8569'


Height: 320 mm Mount, Width: 380 mm Mount

Object history note

Drawn by Edith A. Cubitt for an Ernest Nister publication, ca.1900. Bequeathed to the V&A in 1970 by Anne and Fernand G. Renier as part of the Renier Collection.

Descriptive line

Watercolour drawing by Edith A. Cubitt, ca.1900; commissioned by Ernest Nister.


Pen and ink; Watercolour; Card



Subjects depicted

Games; Girls; Boys; Children (people by age group); Play


Drawings; Illustration; Books; Children & Childhood; National Art Library

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.