The meeting of a Family in Heaven.
London, Published May 1st 1808 by Cadell & Davies, Strand.
Etching. Sheet 270 x 145mm, 10¾ x 5¾".
A couple and their five children embracing in the afterlife, drawn by one of Britain's most visionary artists. William Blake (1757-1827) was commissioned to illustrate 'The Grave', a poem of the Presbyterian minister Robert Blair (1699-1746), written 1743. Although it was originally intended that Blake should also engrave the plates, the job was passed over to Luigi Schiavonetti (1765-1810), as the publishers thought Blake's style too crude and less commercial. In fact Blake only received £20 for his designs; Schiavonetti was paid close to £600. The frontispiece portrait of Blake was engraved by Schiavonetti after Thomas Phillips. In 2001 Blake's portfolio of 19 original designs (more than were published) for 'The Grave' was discovered in an Edinburgh bookshop: to universal condemnation the drawings were sold separately by auction, dispersed for ever.
Russell: The Engravings of William Blake, 40, iii.
[Ref: 21037] £95.00