- George Stubbs 1724–1806
- Etching and engraving on paper
- Image: 356 x 467 mm
- Purchased 1975
T01986 LEOPARDS AT PLAY first published 1780; reprinted 1974–5
Writing-engraving: See T01985 above
Etching and engraving, worked area 13 11/16×18 3/8 (34.8×46.7), plate size 15×19 (38.1×48.2)
Purchased from Miss Beryl Pomeroy (Gytha Trust) 1975
Coll: printed from the original copper-plate (T.1985) by Raymond Thain supervised by Philip McQueen, master printer at Thomas Ross & Son, London, 1974 or 1975
Lit: as for T01985; see also Basil Taylor, The Prints of George Stubbs, 1969, p.24, no.2
Following the discovery of the original copper-plate of ‘Leopards at Play’ in 1970, a limited and final edition was printed at Thomas Ross and Son's in 1974–5 before the acquisition of the plate by the Tate Gallery. The edition comprised 60 impressions in brown-black ink on hand-made paper watermarked ‘J. Green & Co’ and 175 impressions in black ink on hand-made paper from J. Barcham Green with the John Boydell Press watermark dated 1971. In addition, ten impressions out of series were taken for printer and publisher. The edition was published for Observer Art by Iain Bain at the John Boydell Press. T01986 is one of the impressions in black ink.
Only three states of the print are known and these differ merely in the inscriptions: 1. Without any inscription; an example was sold at Sotheby's, 14 January 1971 (52, repr.); 2. With etched or drypoint inscription ‘Painted and Engraved by Geo: Stubbs’ and ‘Publish'd as the Act directs febry. 25, 1780 by Geo: Stubbs London’; an example is in the British Museum; 3. With writing-engraving as it survives on the plate today (see T01985 above). The print described by Taylor as an example of his second state is simply a cut-down impression of the final state, lacking the last line of the writing.
The Tate Gallery 1974-6: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions, London 1978