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Tuesday 12 March 2024

William Hogarth, “Crowns Mitres, Maces etc.”, 1754

William Hogarth (1697–1764)

“Crowns, Mitres, Maces etc.”, 1754, a subscription ticket for “An Election Entertainment” (a series of four prints), initially published in London by William Hogarth in 1754.

Note that this impression was from the original edition of the third (or fourth) state printed on laid paper, but there is a later edition published in London in 1822 that is printed on wove paper following the reworking/”strengthening” of the plate by James Heath (17571834). (My apologies if there are inaccuracies in this account.)

Etching with engraved text on heavy buff colour laid paper.

Size: (sheet) 27.9 x 21.4 cm; (plate) 22.7 x 19.2 cm.

Inscribed in plate within the image: (on tablet at lower left-of-centre [apologies for any errors in my reading of the text]) “An Act for the Encouragement/ of the Arts of Designing Engrav/ ing & Etching by Vesting the/ Properties thereof, in the/ Inventors & Engravers,/ during ye time therein mentione[d].”

Lettered in plate below the image: (centre) “Design’d, Etch’d & Publish’d, as the Act directs, by Wm. Hogarth, March 20th. 1754.”; (below the first text box in a text box with two columns) “In humble & grateful Acknowledgment/ of the Grace & Goodness of the Legislature,/ Manifested./ In the Act of Parliament for the Encouragement/ of the Arts of Designing Engraving &c;/ Obtain’d/ by the Endeavours & almost at the Sole Expence/ of the designer of this Print in the Year 1735;/ By which/ not only the Professors of those Arts were rescued/ from the Tyranny Frauds & Piracies// of Monopolising Dealers/ and Legally entitled to the Fruits of their own Labours/ but Genius & Industry were also prompted/ by ye most noble & generous Inducements to exert themselves,/ Emulation was Excited,/ Ornamental Compositions were better understood, and every Manufacture where Fancy has any concern/ was gradually rais[e]d to a pitch of perfection before unknown,/ Insomuch that those of Great Britain/ are at present the most Elegant/ and the most in Esteem of any in Europe.”; (lowest text box) “Recd. [blank …] of [blank…] 15s being the first Payment/ for three Prints, representing the Polling for Members of Parliament, Canvassing for Votes, &/ Chairing ye Members; Which I Promise to deliver when finished on ye Payment of 16s. & 6d. more.”; (below the text boxes at centre) “N.B. The Price will be rais’d when the Subscription is over.”

State iii/iv? (of iv) with change of the coronet shown on the right from the coronet belonging to the Prince of Wales (states i–ii) to the coronet worn by younger sons of the King George II (as shown here), possibly indicating Hogarth's support for George II's younger son, the Duke of Cumberland (see the BM’s curator’s comment for inv. no. 1864,0714.28 (

Paulson (1989) 197 (Ronald Paulson 1989, “Hogarth's Graphic Works”, Third edition, London).

The British Museum offers the following description of this print: “Subscription ticket for ‘An Election Entertainment” with the royal crown as a sun casting its rays on coronets, mitres and other symbols of power, as well as on a copy of ‘Hogarth's’ Act of 1735. 1754 Etching and engraving” (

Condition: a strong and well-printed impression. Beyond a hole in the lower margin at right, the sheet is in a very good condition for its considerable age with no tears, folds or significant stains.

I am selling this unusual engraving for AU$256 (currently US$169.39/EUR154.94/GBP132.33 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 historically interesting engraving designed to be “filled in” by a potential collector as a contractual agreement/subscription ticket in advance of the publication of a set of three more prints to be engraved by Hogarth—this being the first of four prints in total—please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold