Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Request to view at the Prints & Drawings Study Room, level D

The Toads' Tea Party

Drawing
ca. 1905 (made)
Artist/Maker

Beatrix Potter (1866-1943) is one of the world's best-loved children's authors and illustrators. She wrote the majority of the twenty-three Original Peter Rabbit Books between 1901 and 1913. The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Frederick Warne, 1902) is her most famous and best-loved tale.

This drawing was made to illustrate a rhyme in an intended 1905 book of nursery rhymes in the style of Randolph Caldecott’s picture books. The illustration was for the following rhyme:

If acorn-cups were tea-cups, what should we have to drink?
Why! honey-dew for sugar, in a cuckoo-pint of milk;
With pats of witches’ butter and a tansey cake, I think,
Laid out upon a toad-stool on a cloth of cob-web silk!

Potter did not in the end publish her rhymes until 1917, in Appley Dapply’s Nursery Rhymes.



object details
Category
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
pen and ink and watercolour on paper
Brief Description
Watercolour and pen and ink drawing of a Toads' tea party, showing a group of toads eating cake and drinking out of acorn cups in a woodland setting; drawn for an intended book of nursery rhymes by Beatrix Potter in ca. 1905; Linder Bequest cat. no. LB.710.
Physical Description
A finished drawing in pen and ink and watercolour showing six toads on toadstool 'stools' grouped around a toadstool table eating cake and drinking from acorn cups in a woodland setting, while a seventh toad looks on. Each toad has a colourful jacket in brown, green, pink or blue.
Dimensions
  • Sheet height: 203mm
  • Sheet width: 160mm
Style
Production typeUnique
Credit line
Linder Bequest [plus object number; written on labels on the same line as the object number]
Object history
Drawn by Beatrix Potter, ca. 1905. Acquired by the V&A from Leslie Linder (1904-1973) in 1973 as part of the Linder Bequest, a collection of ca. 2150 watercolours, drawings, literary manuscripts, correspondence, books, photographs, and other memorabilia associated with Beatrix Potter and her family.
Subjects depicted
Summary
Beatrix Potter (1866-1943) is one of the world's best-loved children's authors and illustrators. She wrote the majority of the twenty-three Original Peter Rabbit Books between 1901 and 1913. The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Frederick Warne, 1902) is her most famous and best-loved tale.



This drawing was made to illustrate a rhyme in an intended 1905 book of nursery rhymes in the style of Randolph Caldecott’s picture books. The illustration was for the following rhyme:



If acorn-cups were tea-cups, what should we have to drink?

Why! honey-dew for sugar, in a cuckoo-pint of milk;

With pats of witches’ butter and a tansey cake, I think,

Laid out upon a toad-stool on a cloth of cob-web silk!



Potter did not in the end publish her rhymes until 1917, in Appley Dapply’s Nursery Rhymes.



Bibliographic Reference
Hobbs, Anne Stevenson, and Joyce Irene Whalley, eds. Beatrix Potter: the V & A collection : the Leslie Linder bequest of Beatrix Potter material : watercolours, drawings, manuscripts, books, photographs and memorabilia. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1985.p.73; no.710Hobbs, Anne Stevenson, and Joyce Irene Whalley, eds. Beatrix Potter: the V & A collection: the Leslie Linder bequest of Beatrix Potter material: watercolours, drawings, manuscripts, books, photographs and memorabilia. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1985. p.73; no.710
Other Number
LB.710 - Linder Bequest catalogue no.
Collection
Library Number
BP.518

About this object record

Explore the Collections contains over a million catalogue records, and over half a million images. It is a working database that includes information compiled over the life of the museum. Some of our records may contain offensive and discriminatory language, or reflect outdated ideas, practice and analysis. We are committed to addressing these issues, and to review and update our records accordingly.

You can write to us to suggest improvements to the record.

Suggest Feedback

record createdMarch 25, 2015
Record URL