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  • Place of origin:

    London (printed)

  • Date:

    1780 (published)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Carington Bowles (printer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Etching and engraving

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level C, case GG, shelf 75, box C

This is one of a set of six prints telling the story of Harriet Heedless, a county girl who arrives in town looking for a position as a servant, only to be duped into becoming a 'kept woman' and later descending into prostitution and poverty. This set, published in 1780, is based on an earlier set by William Hogarth entitled 'The Harlot's Progress' (1732) and shows how his influence on printmaking remained strong fifty years on.

Physical description

Harriet Heedless now working as a maid, brings a tray of food to the bedroom of a Rake, who is wearing a dressing gown (or banyan) and hair curlers. On the table beside him is the 'Morning Post' newspaper and a closed book. The 'Bawd' opens the door for Harriet and outside the door on the staircase, the scene is watched by a maid servant.

The room is furnished with curtained bed, a table, chairs and an ornately framed round mirror and arabesque-patterned carpet. On the wall are three pictures, one of a woman holding a mask, the other a portrait of a man and an oval picture between them depicting Cupid wearing a blind-fold.

Place of Origin

London (printed)


1780 (published)


Carington Bowles (printer)

Materials and Techniques

Etching and engraving

Marks and inscriptions

Harriet introduced to the Rake, in the Character of a Servant, while the Bawd skulks behind the Door.
across bottom below image

Printed for & Sold by Carington Bowles, at his Map & Print Warehouse, No. 69 in St Pauls Church Yard, London. Published as the Act directs, 15 May 1780
across bottom below image and description

numbered bottom right corner below image

numbered top right corner above image

title of the newspaper on the table


Height: 21.5 cm sheet, Width: 28 cm sheet

Object history note

RP No. 92/2553

Descriptive line

Print from a set of six 'The Modern Harlot's Progress or the Adventures of Harriet Heedless', printed by Carington Bowles, London; British, 1780.

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

British Museum. Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires. London. 1870-1954.


Printing ink; Paper


Etching; Engraving

Subjects depicted

Portraits; Newspaper; Bed curtains; Caricatures; Mirrors; Costume; Windows; Bedrooms; Overdoor; Pictures; Prostitute; Door frames; Book; Carpet; Interior views; Chairs; Tables; Domestic servants


Fashion; Interiors; Satire; Prints


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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