Tom Merry - Group of 4 19th Century Lithographs, St, Stephen's Review Cartoons
DescriptionA group of 4 coloured lithographic cartoons, each signed within the plate to the bottom right corner 'Tom Merry del et Lith'. From the St, Stephen's Review (a weekly magazine which ran from 1883-1892), dated Dec 15th 1888, August 31st 1889, Jan 5th 1889, Nov 23rd 1889. With varying captions, as shown in photos. Signed in plate.
The condition of the prints are fairly consistent. There is scattered foxing to all prints. There is a fold to the centre of each of the prints, likely to be an original fold from when they were part of the magazine. One of the prints ('The fight with Apollyon') has a 10 cm closed tear to the left side.
30.8 x 47cm (12.1" x 18.5")Sheet: 37.9 x 53.4cm (14.9" x 21")
William Mecham (1853 – 21 August 1902) was a British cartoonist and performer, taking the stage and pen name Tom Merry.
He was a professional caricaturist who gave 'Lightning Cartoon' presentations on the music hall stage, and was the first celebrity of any kind to appear in a British film. Merry was a cartoonist and political satirist, he created the centre spread in colour of The St Stephen's Review, a weekly magazine of political comment published from 1883 to 1892, when it became Big Ben, and closed the following year. Thirty four political lithographs, of statesmen of the era are in the collection of the House of Commons. A number of presentation (signed) copies were also in the personal collection of Winston Churchill, with his father, Lord Randolph Churchill as subject. He also published in the London edition of the American satirical Puck Magazine, from January 1889 to June 1890.
Merry's musical hall stage act appears to have involved high speed drawing of subjects drawn both from the audience, and of famous figures from memory. The caricatures were drawn at a furious pace, as can be seen in the films that survive.
|Date||Late 19th Century|
|Dimensions||30.8 x 47cm|
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