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Artist: James Walker after James Northcote
Title: Northcote - The Spell
Id Number: 01994
Description: Proof impression with scratched letter. Ref: CS 23 I.
A young girl, kneeling before a milk-pail, attentively observes a snail creeping over ashes on a block to the right. A spaniel-like dog looks into her face. It was thought that on the morning of the !st of May, if a girl found a slug or snail and put it on a surface covered with flour or ashes, the snail would crawl out the initials of the future lover's name. Even just finding the snail was a good omen, indicating the lover will have a house of his own. The picture was inspired by a poem by John Gay.
James Walker (1748-1808) was an eminent mezzotint engraver and James Northcote an important English painter.
Laid loosely onton backing sheet. Small waterstains in the title area. Small rubbing on pail.
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