Gallery of prints for sale

Thursday 27 May 2021

John McLure Hamilton’s colour lithograph, “Portrait of the Right Honourable William Ewart Gladstone”, 1898

John McLure Hamilton (1853–1936)

“Portrait of the Right Honourable William Ewart Gladstone” (aka “Mr. Gladstone in his Study at Hawarden Castle”; “William Ewart Gladstone, 1809–1898. Liberal Statesman and Author”), 1898, published as an illustration (p. 296) to Joseph & Elizabeth Robins Pennell’s (1898), “Lithography and Lithographers; Some Chapters in the History of the Art” (see:

Joseph Pennell (1898) offers the following explanation for the printing of this and other colour lithographs:

“The artist makes his drawing in black chalk in the ordinary way on stone or paper. From this drawing a number of offsets are made by the printer in some sort of colour or ink which does not sink into the stone, as it has no grease in it. This ink while wet is dusted over with red chalk. The artist has now to determine the colours he is going to use, or rather he must have determined the number before, for as many of these offsets are made as there are to be colours in the print. He takes the stone which he proposes, for example, to print in red, and goes over every line he wishes to print red with his black lithographic chalk. He gives the stone back to the printer, who, by washing it, removes all the red chalk offset, and only those lines which the artist has gone over with his black chalk remain on the stone. This, then, is the red stone. He proceeds to do the same thing with all the other colours on the other stones, and then gums, rolls up, and etches them, thus producing a mosaic picture which, if put together and printed, one stone after the other and the black as well, will, when all the stones are printed, produce the original design — the colour print he wants” (p.394).

Note that Paul Naumann (aka Paul Hermann Naumann) (fl.1851–1897) executed a wood-engraving after Hamilton’s portrait published in "The Illustrated London News" (11 February 1893). Printed below this engraving is the text: “The New Canadian Portrait, by Mr. McLure Hamilton, for the Chicago Exhibition” (see

Three-colour lithograph (black, white and sanguine) on green-grey coarse wove paper with wide margins.

Size: (sheet) 34.2 x 26.3 cm.

Inscribed on the stone with the artist’s signature at lower right.

See descriptions of this print at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the National Galleries of Scotland:;

Condition: a marvellous impression with glowing colour. Beyond slight age-toning to the outer edges, the sheet is in an excellent condition with no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, significant stains or foxing.

I am selling this sensitively executed colour lithograph of the four-term Prime Minister of the United Kingdom quietly reading in his study, for AU$252 (currently US$195.39/EUR159.99/GBP138.38 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 superb lithograph capturing the essence of the great statesman with the lightest of touches, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please let me know your thoughts, advice about inaccuracies (including typos) and additional information that you would like to add to any post.