He Revels: A Rake's Progress, Plate 3

A Rake's Progress
Creation date
etching and engraving
12 3/8 x 15 1/4 in. (image) 17 1/8 x 23 in. (sheet)
Credit line
Gift of William George Sullivan
Accession number
Not Currently On View

This scene of debauchery takes place at a bawdy house identified on the tray the porter is bringing in as the Rose Tavern, Drury Lane. It is 3:00 a.m. by the watch a prostitute is handing to her confederate, having purloined it from the pocket of the Rake, who is drunk beyond caring. A “posture-moll,” the 18th-century equivalent of a stripper, is undressing at the right, preparing to assume various “postures” upon the tray when placed on the table.

William George Sullivan; given to the John Herron Art Institute, now the Indianapolis Museum of Art, in 1930.
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