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The engraver and publisher Robert Cromek commissioned this painting from Blake’s friend Stothard. Cromek put it on display and charged visitors a shilling to see it. He also collected subscriptions for the forthcoming print of the painting.  

Blake claimed that Cromek had commissioned a painting of the Canterbury Pilgrims from him first, but Cromek had not liked the design and so took the commission to Stothard. Blake accused Cromek and, through him, Stothard of copying his long, frieze-like composition. It is unlikely that Blake’s accusations were well-founded, but the dispute effectively ended Blake and Stothard's friendship.

September 2004