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Some Modern Caricaturists. With Specimens of their Work.

MALLETT (Walter).

MALLETT (Walter).

Some Modern Caricaturists. With Specimens of their Work. A Lecture Delivered in the Parish Room of St. Augustine's Kilburn, by Walter Mallett. October 25. 1898.

Manuscript in black ink on paper, [52]ff, text mostly to recto, with 19 fine ink drawings.

Small 4to. [230 x 184 x 12 mm]. Contemporary binding by Combe of Kilburn (signed with an ink pallet inside front cover) of green cloth, the front cover lettered in gilt, yellow endleaves, red sprinkled edges. (A little rubbed and marked).
[Kilburn 1898].

With two leaves of contemporary reviews of the lecture inserted at the end, and two loose letters, one an A.L.S. from Harry Furniss dated 1901, the other an illustrated Valentine's verse. With the signature of Caroline Mallett on the front pastedown.

"This Lecture was delivered in response to an invitation from The Randolph Literary & Debating Society, one of the most excellent institutions in connexion with the Church and Parish of S. Augustine, Kilburn. It met with the warmest appreciation at the hands of its Members and upon the occasion of its delivery was attended by the Vicar of the Parish the Rev. R.C. Kirkpatrick M.A.".

The survey, which includes comments on and drawings after Furniss, Keene, Caldecott, Reed and May, opens with favourable comparison to "The Rowlandsons and Gillrays [who] have had their day. Hogarth had his - and a great one it was. But he could not be so sure of a public nowadays". Despite a rather moral opening the lecture was not without humour and the reviews confirmed that it was well received.

The work was never published, and it is to be assumed, given the neat penmanship and the highly skilled drawings, that this fair copy was produced as a family memento. The author and illustrator was Walter Mallett (1849-1913), a caricaturist, artist, writer and regular lecturer at the Randolph Literary and Debating Society. Born in Paddington, he worked his way up from employment as a greengrocer porter to a High Court Judge's clerk in the Royal Courts of Justice. When the law courts closed for the summer recess he enjoyed travelling the south of England taking his sketch book wherever he went. He wrote a novel, Quite a Change. A Holiday Romance, published in London in 1900, and his great-granddaughter has an annual, Looking Glass Land, written for the amusement of friends and relatives, containing some of his caricatures, and a play in manuscript, Another Man's Money.

Stock no. ebc4574

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