22 June 2010
PROPERTY FROM AN AMERICAN PRIVATE COLLECTION
DULAC, Edmund (1882-1953). "The Tempest, Act IV, scene 1: ('...they join with nymphs in a graceful dance')." Circa 1908.
Signed "Edmund Dulac" (lower right), additionally inscribed on verso: "The Tempest No. 20 & 21 enter certain reapers properly habited. They join with nymphs in a graceful dance Act IV Sc 1 after lines 112, 113."
Watercolor, pencil, and ink on paper; matted and framed.
12 x 17 in.
The first edition of Shakespeare's The Tempest illustrated by Dulac was published in 1908 as Shakespeare's Comedy of The Tempest with a scholarly plot summary and commentary by Arthur Quiller-Couch, lavishly bound and illustrated with 40 watercolor illustrations. It stands among his most successful illustrated books. This original drawing was used to illustrate an episode from Act IV, Scene 1, when the goddess Iris speaks:
You nymphs, call'd Naiads, of the windring brooks,
With your sedged crowns and ever-harmless looks,
Leave your crisp channels and on this green land
Answer your summons; Juno does command:
Come, temperate nymphs, and help to celebrate
A contract of true love; be not too late.
Enter certain Nymphs
You sunburnt sicklemen, of August weary,
Come hither from the furrow and be merry:
Make holiday; your rye-straw hats put on
And these fresh nymphs encounter every one
In country footing.
The stage instruction follows and reads: "Enter certain Reapers, properly habited: they join with the Nymphs in a graceful dance."
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