William Cowper - Author of "The Task"
Publish'd Nov.r 5 1802 by J Johnson St. Pauls Church Yard
Stipple engraving, sheet 285 x 220mm (11¼ x 8½").
Portrait of poet William Cowper (1731-1800), engraved by William Blake from a drawing by Thomas Lawrence (Olney, Cowper Museum) and published as the frontispiece to volume two of William Hayley's Life of Cowper (1802). Hayley was a patron of Blake and employed him to provide a series of engravings for this project. Cowper's poem 'The Task' (1784) was an immediate success, condemning slavery and advocating the humane treatment of animals in a way slightly ahead of public opinion.
[Ref: 31329] £140.00