Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

'At Home' in the Nursery, or The Masters & Misses Twoshoes Christmas Party

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    01/08/1835 (published)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Cruikshank, George, born 1792 - died 1878 (artist)
    Thomas McLean & Co (publisher)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Etching on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

George Cruikshank (1792-1878) was an English caricaturist and book illustrator. Early in his career he produced social and political caricatures of English life, such as this manic scene in a nursery (first published in 1826). He went on to become a leading exponent in the art of book illustration and is generally accredited as heralding the golden age of children's book illustration. Among his most popular illustrated works are the first English translation of Grimm's fairy tales, German Popular Stories, published in two volumes by Charles Baldwyn from 1823-6, Sir Walter Scott's Waverley Novels (1836-8) and Charles Dickens' novels, Sketches by Boz (1836) and Oliver Twist (1838). Most of Cruikshank's illustrative work was produced on copper, etched by himself.

His illustrative style went out of fashion in the 1840s but, inspired by the temperance movement, he continued to illustrate temperance tracts and folios of moralising prints, such as 'The Bottle' (1847) and its sequel, 'The Drunkard's Children' (1848). He remained an ardent social reformer throughout his life.

Physical description

Hand-coloured etching of a scene in a nursery depicting various activities, including a boy on a rocking horse, a servant carrying in beverages and food on a platter, children playing with toy soldiers, a girl pretending to ride a horse (using two chairs), two boys sword-fighting and girls playing with dolls. In a border, with the title and publication information printed below the image.

Place of Origin

London (made)


01/08/1835 (published)


Cruikshank, George, born 1792 - died 1878 (artist)
Thomas McLean & Co (publisher)

Materials and Techniques

Etching on paper

Marks and inscriptions

Initialled in pencil by Anne Renier on verso


Height: 241 mm Whole, Width: 304 mm Whole

Object history note

Etched by George Cruikshank and published by Thomas McLean on 1st August 1835. Bequeathed to the V&A in 1970 by Anne and Fernand G. Renier as part of the Renier Collection.

Descriptive line

Hand-coloured etching, 'At Home in the Nursery, or the Masters & Misses Twoshoes Christmas Party', etched by George Cruikshank and published by Thomas McLean 1st August 1835.


Paper (fiber product); Etching; Watercolour


Etching (printing process); Hand-colouring

Subjects depicted

Children (people by age group); Chairs; Dancing; Rocking horses; Fighting; Boys; Toy soldiers; Umbrellas; Women; Flags; Infants; Drums (membranophones); Servants; Play; Nurseries (rooms); Swords; Caricatures; Dolls; Toys (recreational artifacts); Wooden horse (toy); Humour; Girls


Illustration; Prints; 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.