N05853 An Exact Representation of the Game of Cricket c. 1760
Oil on canvas 489×591 (19 1/4×23 1/4)
Purchased (Grant-in-Aid) 1948
PROVENANCE ...; T. Grange, from whom bt 1948
EXHIBITED Two Centuries of Cricket Art, Graves Art Gallery, Sheffield 1955 (2, as ‘attributed to L.P. Boitard’)
This is one of several versions in oil, probably by different hands, which are based on a line-engraving lettered (above) with the title ‘An Exact Representation of the Game of Cricket’ and (below) ‘H. Roberts sculp. from a curious drawing made after the life by L.P. Boitard’, published by John Bowles in several states, one dated 1743 (repr. Neville Cardus and John Arlott, The Noblest Game, 1969, pl.1).
Boitard's ‘curious drawing’ is now untraced, but was probably in pen and ink, with or without watercolour (like all his known work?). A larger oil version (622×990, 24 1/2×38 3/4), in the collection of the Marylebone Cricket Club (fig.2), appears to correspond in all details with the engraving; it bears the initials ‘R.H.’ lower left (? the reversed initials of H. Roberts, the engraver), and may be the first version in oil…