Gallery of prints for sale

Tuesday 10 May 2022

Hubert von Herkomer’s etching with drypoint, “The Babes in the Wood”, 1880

Hubert von Herkomer (aka Sir Hubert von Herkomer) (1849–1914)

“The Babes in the Wood”, 1880, published in Vienna by Gesellschaft für vervielfältigende Kunst (Society for Reproducing Art) (fl.1871–1933) in “Die Vervielfältigende Kunst der Gegenwart” (The multiplying art of the present), issue XXXIII (1893).

The Curator of the British Museum offers the following insights about this print: “The print appeared in 'The Art Journal' in January 1881, opposite p.26 and was lettered 'Drawn and etched by Hubert Herkomer'. The print received this commentary; 'The artist's children, playing at a game which is better known in Germany than here, pursue their way through a forest (represented by the old familiar wooden tree on the table) infested with lions, dragons, and other beasts of prey. The affected terror on their faces is delightfully rendered' ('Our illustrations', 'The Art Journal', January 1881, p.28)” (BM inv. no. 1881,0312.124).

Etching and drypoint printed in brown ink on cream chine collé on heavy wove paper.

Size: (sheet) 38.8 x 29.5 cm; (plate) 32.3 x 24.9 cm; (chine collé) 31 x 23.8 cm; (image borderline) 26.3 x 19.9 cm.

Inscribed in plate within the image borderline: (lower centre) “H H 80”.

Lettered in plate below the image borderline: (centre) “ORIGINAL RADIRUNG VON HUBERT HERKOMER./ THE BABES IN THE WOOD./ Druck der Gesellschaft f. vervielf. Kunst in Wien.”

The British Museum offers the following description of this print: “Babes in the Wood; two young children, looking upwards to left, frightened, the girl clasping her hands together, the boy with his arms around her neck, protectively, a small dragon hanging on a string by their heads to left and a statuette of a lion and a baton on a table in front to right” (

Condition: a richly inked, well-printed (near faultless) impression in near pristine condition with no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains, foxing or signs of handling.

I am selling this visually arresting etching showing the artist’s two children (Elsa Herkomer [1877–1938] and Siegfried Herkomer [1874–1939]) re-enacting the tradition story of two children abandoned in an enchanted forest, “The Babies in the Wood”, first published in 1595 by Thomas Millington (fl.1591–1603), for AU$198 in total (currently US$137.74/EUR130.31/GBP111.66 at the time of posting this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world, but not (of course) any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries.

If you are interested in purchasing this graphically strong and superbly executed etching (with drypoint), I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

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