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This delightful sheet of doodles vividly demonstrates Mortimer's drawing skills and his fertile imagination. He apparently worked with confidence, and at great speed. 'The rapidity of his execution
was astonishing', noted a friend, 'and his powers of drawing superior to anything produced by his contemporaries'.

 

Mortimer was also something of a daredevil and often got into dangerous scrapes. Not content with drinking
wine, he also on one occasion ate
the wineglass, 'of which act of folly
he never recovered'. Mortimer died
aged thirty-eight.

September 2004