William Blake Catherine Blake. Verso: A Man’s Head and Other Drawings c.1805

Share this artwork

Artwork details

Artist
William Blake 1757–1827
Title
Catherine Blake. Verso: A Man’s Head and Other Drawings
Date c.1805
Medium Graphite on paper. Verso: ink on paper
Dimensions Support: 286 x 221 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Bequeathed by Miss Alice G.E. Carthew 1940
Reference
N05188
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Display caption

Blake's wife Catherine was born in Battersea in April 1762; her full name was Catherine Sophia Boucher. She married Blake at St Mary's, Battersea on 18 August 1782. Blake's first biographer wrote of her: 'A brunette and very pretty are terms I have picked up as conveying something regarding her appearance in more youthful days. Blake himself would boast what a pretty wife he had. She lost her beauty as the seasons sped, - never saw a woman so much altered was the impression of one on meeting her again after a lapse of but seven years; a life of hard work and privation having told heavily upon her in the interim.' Catherine helped Blake in printing and colouring his Illuminated Books.

October 1996

About this artwork