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Statuette - The Bather
  • The Bather
    Edwards, Morton, born 1834 - died 1917
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The Bather

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    1867 (carved)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Edwards, Morton, born 1834 - died 1917 (sculptor)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Tinted marble

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The Museum purchased this figure direct from the sculptor, Morton Edwards (1834-1917), in 1872. In his Guide to Modelling in Clay and Wax (1879) Edwards commented on the interest in tinted statuary, noting that John Gibson had revived the process of colouring marble, and that 'there seems to have been latterly a much more favourable opinion respecting its employment, for there are many who think very highly of the results obtained by colouring or tinting marble statues both among sculptors and artists. ... The public generally say, "Give us a picture - sculpture is too cold"; and they are in a measure right. What should we say of anyone who esteemed a black and white crayon drawing of a picture more than the picture itself in all its glory of colour?'

Edwards was born in London. In 1879 he published 'A Guide to Modelling in Clay and Wax', in which he described himself as Professor of Modelling, Secretary of the Society of Sculptors 1862; editor of the Fine Arts Magazine and Sculptors' Journal 1863; Secretary of Literary and Artistic Society 1872 and Secretary of the Glyptic Society in 1876. In the preface he noted that he studied under William Behnes [q.v.] from 1852 to 1845, and in Rome under John Gibson [q.v.] in 1859. According to Susan Rich, a descendant of Edwards, he spent 27 years in the United States, and in 1910 was planning to return to London from San Francisco, in order to raise funds to finance his book 'The History of Sculpture from the earliest period to the present time'.

Physical description

Tinted marble statuette of a woman bather. Four fingers on the left hand are missing.

Place of Origin

England (made)


1867 (carved)


Edwards, Morton, born 1834 - died 1917 (sculptor)

Materials and Techniques

Tinted marble


Height: 68.5 cm

Object history note

Purchased from the sculptor in 1872 for £52 10s.

Descriptive line

Statuette, tinted marble, the Bather, by Morton Edwards, England, 1867

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

Bilbey, Diane and Trusted Marjorie. British Sculpture 1470 to 2000. A Concise Catalogue of the Collection at the Victoria and Albert Museum. London, 2002, p. 257, cat. no. 389
List of Objects in the Art Division, South Kensington, Acquired During the Year 1872, Arranged According to the Dates of Acquisition. London: Printed by George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode for H.M.S.O., p. 30
Rix, Alice, "The Fortunes of Morton Edwards and the features of Miss Flosd", The Sunday Call, San Francisco, July 10, 1898



Subjects depicted

Bather; Naked woman




Sculpture Collection

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