Chatterton in Art
Creating Rowley Manuscripts
Age: 10-15, Bristol
'Chatterton's Holiday Afternoon'
Chatterton is depicted composing his Rowley manuscripts in the Muniment Room, above the North Porch of St Mary Redcliffe Church. A truly wonderful engraving by William Ridgway, from an 1869 painting by William Bright Morris (1844-1896?). It is hard to believe that a painting with this subject matter could be lost without trace! The engraving was first published by the Art Journal in 1875.
My own copy of the engraving must have been removed from a broken copy of the Art Journal, as it is signed in the plate, whereas a copy printed under the heading 'Wood Engravings and Typogravures,' in Character Sketches of Romance, Fiction and Drama, 1892, is unsigned, and instead has the title at the foot of the engraving (shown below).
Update: W.B. Morris was born in Salford, so I have sent an email to Salford Museum and Art Gallery asking if they have knowledge of the painting - I've had a reply: Unfortunately they have no knowledge of this artwork.
Why am I bothering with this? Because I see everything as a crumb in the trail leading us home to the truth (and I just love discovering stuff). (.QE!.)