Sale 20BP01 | Lot 80

SHEPARD, ERNEST H. Original drawing ["They got the boat out and Rat took the sculls"] for Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows.

Catalogue: Rare Books, Autographs & Maps featuring the Mary K. Young Collection
SHEPARD, ERNEST H.  Original drawing ["They got the boat out and Rat took the sculls"] for Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows.

Lot Details

Lot 80
SHEPARD, ERNEST H. Original drawing ["They got the boat out and Rat took the sculls"] for Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows.
Redrawn 11 January 1956 (pencilled note in Graham's hand at l.r.) for the 1959 edition, with a further notation "to face p. 161" (l.l.). Ink drawing on Whatman Water Color Board depicting the Mole and Rat rowing towards a bridge, signed in ink "E.H. Shepard" (l.l.); the verso annotated in Shepard's hand "Return to/E. H. Shepard/Woodmancote/Lodsworth/Sussex". The illustration board 10 1/2 x 7 1/2 inches (7 x 19.5 cm), the drawing itself occupying approximately 8 1/2 x 6 1/2 inches (23 x 17 cm). The drawing was taped to the overmat, with tape still on the edges of the verso. Other than two small tape-marks in the left margin) concealed under the mat), the condition of the surface of the drawing is generally clean and unmarred.

Provenance: Christie's London December 12, 1990, lot 122; purchased by Justin G. Schiller Ltd. on behalf of Mary K. Young

This is the second illustration in Chapter 7, "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn". The illustrator for the frontispiece of the 1908 first edition of Wind in the Willows was W. Graham Robertson, but the book was otherwise unillustrated. Shepard's illustrations were published in 1931, most likely with Grahame's blessing, and his depictions of the Rat, Mole, Toad, Badger and their friends have become standard, though many other illustrators, both before and after Shepard, have illustrated the book. Part of the appeal of Shepard's work is that he so convincingly captures the characters of the animals in Grahame's text, and his deft delineations, scattered as they are throughout rather than intruding as separate plates, greatly enhance the narrative. In 1959 Shepard produced a set of eight color illustrations for the publisher, Methuen, and the book was reissued with these. At that time, Shepard redrew some of the line illustrations, including the present, which was also used (within an oval cartouche) on the dust jacket of the book for a number of years thereafter.

Please note that bids on any lot exceeding $10,000 require an emailed request for an increased bid limit. This email should be written as soon as possible to [email protected] As a heavy volume of bidding is expected, it is advisable to place bids in advance of the closing date of the auction. The text of this lot updated on April 15th.


C The Mary K. Young Collection

Estimate: $20,000 - $25,000
Sold for $25,000 (includes buyer's premium)

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Estimate: $20,000 - $25,000
Sold for $25,000 (includes buyer's premium)

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Catalogue Info

Rare Books, Autographs & Maps featuring the Mary K. Young Collection

Wed, Apr 22, 2020 at 10am EDT