Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Request to view at the Prints & Drawings Study Room, level C , Case GG, Shelf 138, Box T

Tales of Wonder!

Print
1/2/1802 (Printed)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This print satirises the fashion for lurid Gothic novels in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. A woman reads aloud from Matthew Lewis' 'The Monk', a scandalous horror novel published in 1796, provoking fascination and fear in her well-dressed companions.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Hand-coloured etching
Brief Description
Satirical print, 'Tales of Wonder!' by James Gillray, London, 1802
Physical Description
Three women in fashionable evening dress sit around a table by candlelight. One of women holds a copy of 'The Monk' and reads aloud to her companions, who react in amazement and horror at the tale.
Dimensions
  • Height: 29.3cm (sheet size)
  • Width: 41.2 (sheet size)
Content description
Three women sitting at a table listen to another reading from The Monk by M. G. Lewis. A Satire on the romances by Lewis and his school.
Marks and Inscriptions
  • TALES of WONDER!
  • J. Gillray, inv & ft (?)
  • Publish'd Feb.y 1.st 1802 by H. Humphrey 27 st James's Street London
  • This attempt to describe the effects of the Sublime & Wonderful is dedicated to M G Lewis Esq MP
Credit line
Bequeathed by John Jones
Object history
Object originally bound in a guard-book containing one hundred and fifteen caricatures by T. Rowlandson, W. Heath, J. Gillray, R. Dighton, G. Cruikshank and others
Subject depicted
Summary
This print satirises the fashion for lurid Gothic novels in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. A woman reads aloud from Matthew Lewis' 'The Monk', a scandalous horror novel published in 1796, provoking fascination and fear in her well-dressed companions.
Bibliographic References
  • George, Mary Dorothy, Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum, Vol. VII 1801-1810 British Museum, London, 1947. Later impressions (represented in the B.M. by the 1830 and 1851 reprints) have an inscription in the upper border: 'This attempt to describe the effects of the Sublime & Wonderful, is dedicated to M. G. Lewis Esqr, M.P. (Lewis was M.P. for Hindon 1796-1802).
  • The Grotesque Factor Malaga: Museo Picasso, 2012. ISBN: 9788494024917.
Collection
Accession Number
1232:87-1882

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record createdJune 8, 2009
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