Thomas Rowlandson
Two O’Clock Ordinary date not known

Artwork details

Thomas Rowlandson 1756–1827
Two O’Clock Ordinary
Date Date not known
Medium Graphite, ink and watercolour on paper
Dimensions Support: 219 x 348 mm
Acquisition Purchased as part of the Oppé Collection with assistance from the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund 1996
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Display caption

This gentle satire shows a public eating house or 'ordinary', where a meal was provided at a fixed time and a set price. Needless to say, the atmosphere is chaotic. The diners eagerly attack the food, tussling with their neighbours to get their fill. A print from Rowlandson's drawing was published in 1811. There, the eating house is identified as Hornsey Wood House, which offered an 'ordinary' on Sundays at 2 pm: 'Hot roast and boiled from two to five/ Dinners drest on the shortest notice'.

September 2004

About this artwork