Buy A Bonnet Box thumbnail 1
Buy A Bonnet Box thumbnail 2
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Request to view at the Prints & Drawings Study Room, level H , Shelf 37, Case WD, Box A

Buy A Bonnet Box

Watercolour
1804 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This watercolour shows a man selling band-boxes outside a Bond Street bookshop. It is one of 31 similar works which William Marshall Craig (c.1750-c.1828) produced to illustrate Modern London, a guide book published by Richard Phillips in 1804. The V&A already possesses 10 watercolours from the series.

The bookshop shown in this watercolour was owned by Benjamin Tabart (1767/8-1833), who also ran his specialist children's publishing company, The Juvenile & School Library, from the premises. As fellow publishers and possibly former business partners, Tabart and Richard Phillips were closely connected: advertising, selling and even reprinting one another's books. That Craig was instructed to illustrate Tabart's shop was evidently a friendly gesture on Phillips' part; probably he hoped to offer his colleague a bit of free publicity.


object details
Category
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Water-colour, pen and ink on paper
Brief Description
Watercolour by William Marshall Craig showing a man selling hat boxes on Bond Street, London. Reproduced as an aquatint in Richard Phillips' 'Modern London' of 1804.
Physical Description
Watercolour showing a man carrying a variety of hat boxes strung on a pole. He is passing a bookshop, above which is a plaque reading 'Bond Street'. The name of the shop is given as the 'Biblioteque d'Education' and there is a signboard reading 'Juvenile/ & School/ Library/ B.Tabart'
Dimensions
  • Height: 15.4cm
  • Width: 11.5cm
The painted image does not fill the whole page. There is a margin around the image of about 2-3cm.
Production typeUnique
Marks and Inscriptions
  • Buy a bonnet Box. (picture title; Margin: above centre; Handwriting; Pen and ink)
  • W M Craig (1) Signature; Margin: below centre; Handwriting; Pen and ink)
  • corner of Grafton Street With Bond Street (Textual information; Margin: below right; Handwriting; Pen and ink)
  • The Juvenile & School Library. B. Tabart No.157 (Textual information; On the back; Handwriting; Pen and ink)
Gallery Label
William Marshall Craig (British, active c.1788 - c.1828) Buy A Bonnet Box, 1804 Watercolour E.857-2000 Bequeathed by Judy Brook This watercolour shows a man selling band-boxes outside a Bond Street bookshop. It is one of 31 similar works which William Marshall Craig produced to illustrate Modern London, a guide book published by Richard Phillips in 1804. Since the V&A already possesses 10 watercolours from the series, this new acquisition is an especially welcome addition to the collection. The bookshop shown in this watercolour was owned by Benjamin Tabart (1767/8-1833), who also ran his specialist children's publishing company, The Juvenile & School Library, from the premises. As fellow publishers and possibly former business partners, Tabart and Richard Phillips were closely connected: advertising, selling and even reprinting one another's books. That Craig was instructed to illustrate Tabart's shop was evidently a friendly gesture on Phillips' part; probably he hoped to offer his colleague a bit of free publicity.
Credit line
Given by Pat Schleger according to Judy Brook's wishes and in her memory
Production
Attribution note: Intended for engraving as a book illustration
Subjects depicted
Places Depicted
Associations
Summary
This watercolour shows a man selling band-boxes outside a Bond Street bookshop. It is one of 31 similar works which William Marshall Craig (c.1750-c.1828) produced to illustrate Modern London, a guide book published by Richard Phillips in 1804. The V&A already possesses 10 watercolours from the series.



The bookshop shown in this watercolour was owned by Benjamin Tabart (1767/8-1833), who also ran his specialist children's publishing company, The Juvenile & School Library, from the premises. As fellow publishers and possibly former business partners, Tabart and Richard Phillips were closely connected: advertising, selling and even reprinting one another's books. That Craig was instructed to illustrate Tabart's shop was evidently a friendly gesture on Phillips' part; probably he hoped to offer his colleague a bit of free publicity.
Bibliographic References
  • Celina Fox, 'Londoners', Thames & Hudson, 1987, pp.124, 144, 146, 163-4
  • Richard Phillips, 'Modern London', 1804/5
  • Coombs, Katherine British watercolours : 1750-1950 . London: V&A Publications, 2012p.87, pl.76
Collection
Accession Number
E.857-2000

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record createdSeptember 29, 2000
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