New River, at Islington with a Family Going Awalking, a Cow Milking, and the Horns Archly Fixed Over the Husband's Head thumbnail 1
Not currently on display at the V&A

New River, at Islington with a Family Going Awalking, a Cow Milking, and the Horns Archly Fixed Over the Husband's Head

Oil Painting
1741-1742 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Oil painting, a copy of Hogarth's "Evening", from his series "Four-Times-of-the-Day." It depicts a man with his wife, child and dog walking, with a public house beyond a fence. The man, a dyer, is revealed as a cuckold by the horns of a cow which appear from behind his head.


object details
Category
Object Type
Additional Title`Evening', a copy after Hogarth's painting (generic title)
Materials and Techniques
Oil on canvas
Brief Description
Francis Hayman (1707/8-1776). Decorative painting for a supper-box at Vauxhall Gardens, London: "New River, at Islington With a Family Going Awalking, a cow Milking, and The Horns Archly Fixed Over the Husband's Head". Copy of William Hogarth's "Evening", from his series "Four-Times-of-the-Day".
Physical Description
Oil painting, a copy of Hogarth's "Evening", from his series "Four-Times-of-the-Day." It depicts a man with his wife, child and dog walking, with a public house beyond a fence. The man, a dyer, is revealed as a cuckold by the horns of a cow which appear from behind his head.
Dimensions
  • Height: 137.2cm
  • Width: 127cm
Style
Production typeUnique
Object history
Purchased, 1994.



Historical significance: This painting was one of the famous series of 50 supper box pictures at Vauxhall Gardens, London. They each formed the back of one 'arbour' or supper box. The arbours were ornate wooden shelters formed of two side walls and a roof, framing picturesque views through the Gardens. At a certain moment in the evening's entertainment, the paintings were 'let fall' [by an as yet unexplained mechanism] to enclose the diners at the back. The front was left permanently open for the fashionable occupants to view and be viewed.



Like many of the surviving paintings, this one has been cut down and retouched at various times. The original dimensions were about 54 x 95 inches. It is painted very thinly in the manner of scene painting. Evening is a version of Hogarth's 1736 painting of the same title, and Hayman's studio also did versions of the other three paintings in Hogarth's series of The Times of the Day. The alternative popular title of Hayman's picture, New River, at Islington With a Family Going Awalking, a Cow Milking, and the Horns Archly Fixed Over the Husband's Head, is taken from a list in The Ambulator; or the Stranger's Companion in a Tour Round London..., London (Bew) p.180 ff., published in 1774.



Hogarth's satires on his fellow citizens of London were very popular and his prints were frequently copied or pirated. The New River Head (a circular reservoir) and Sadler's Wells (next door) were favourite places of resort for the City dwellers, as they were then situated in the fields at the northern edge of the built-up area. There were many farms there supplying milk (hence the presence of the cow) and pasture for the graziers who sold cattle at Smithfield nearby.
Historical context
This painting is one of seven in the V&A by Francis Hayman which relate to Hayman's work for the Vauxhall Gardens. See 'Historical Context' note on Museum Number P.12-1947 [May Day or The Milkmaid's Garland] for information about Hayman and the Vauxhall Gardens, from Brian Allen, Francis Hayman, Published in association with English Heritage (the Iveagh Bequest, Kenwood) and Yale Center for British Art by Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1987, Page 107-9.
Subject depicted
Places Depicted
Associated Objects
Bibliographic References
  • Brian Allen, Francis Hayman, Published in association with English Heritage (the Iveagh Bequest, Kenwood) and Yale Center for British Art by Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1987; including the following citations: Checklist of Paintings, Drawings, Book Illustrations and Prints", pages 171-193: Decorative Paintings for Vauxhall Gardens, pages 180-182, numbers 171-217: "The following list consists of the supper box paintings designed by Hayman and others and executed by Hayman with his studio assistants c.1741-2. The later paintings in the Prince of Wales's Pavilion and in the annexe to the Rotunda have been listed under HISTORY PAINTINGS." Of the 47 works listed by Brian Allen, about 15 survive, of which 7 are in the V&A: No.173 - [then "Untraced"] Museum number E.879-1994] No.179 - Museum number P.70-1986 No.191 - Museum number P.13-1947 (Also Allen, cat. no. 33, p.111-112) No.196 - Museum number P.29-1954 No.200 - Museum number P.69-1986 No.205 - Museum number P.68-1986 No.208 - Museum number P.12-1947 (Also Allen, cat. no. 30, p.109-110) This painting is no. 173.
  • Lawrence Gowing, Hogarth, Hayman, and the Vauxhall Decorations, in The Burlington Magazine, XCV, January 1953, pp.4-19. DECORATIONS RECORDED AT THE GARDENS A. The Supper Boxes "... The Grove is bounded by gravel walks, and a considerable number of pavilions or alcoves, ornamented with paintings from the designs of Mr Hayman and Mr. Hogarth, on subjects admirably adapted to the place..." (The Ambulator, 1774, p.181)*. These alcoves, the supper boxes, extended along the north side of the Grove, the east and the south, from which a further short row ran southward. The boxes and their decorations are listed in... The Ambulator in this order; the same order, and the titles given by The Ambulator will be followed here. * The Ambulator; or, the Stranger's Companion in a tour Round London... comprehending Catalogues of the Pictures by Eminent Artists. London (Bew) [1774], p.180 ff., [2nd edition, 1782], p.193 ff. One of many lists of the pictures, printed in guides. This is the fullest of these guides. [From section 1 of 5 areas of Vauxhall described by Gowing following The Ambulator] [Acquired by the V&A in 1994, museum number E.879-1994] "3 '3. New-river-head, at Islington with a family going awalking, a cow milking, and the horns archly fixed over the husband's head'. Nichols recorded that Hayman copied Hogarth's Four Times a Day for Vauxhall; Evening and Night were still there when The Genuine Works was published in 1808. A copy of Evening was at the Lowther Castle sale, April 29, 1947, lot 1855, 54 x 50 in. The copy is a coarse one, much simplified. If, as is probable, it is the Vauxhall picture, the vertical measurement was approximately that of the decorations in the other boxes; the series would thus have retained some uniformity in spite of the upright shape of the Times of Day. No picture of these dimensions, nor indeed of this shape, figured in the Vauxhall sales, if the printed measurements are to be trusted, and it would not be easy to identify Evening with any of the subjects whose disposal is recorded."
Collection
Accession Number
E.879-1994

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record createdAugust 3, 2000
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