Circle of William Wordsworth and Rev. William Gilpin – ‘Ambleside’

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Drawing in the manner of Rev. William Gilpin (1724-1804). Brush and grey wash on white wove paper. Inscribed with the title ‘Ambleside’ verso.

Inscribed in pen and brown ink with the following text on a separate sheet of blue paper, below the drawing:


Antiquity claims something like parental
reverence, it gives precepts, explains the
present by the past, awakens memory,
is an impress of the steps of time, a sacred
relict of the effects of human power, a great
incitement to performance, example of excellence.
Nothing is so ancient so honourable as virtue;
It had existence before the first of men:
(was this?) its dominion stile, where seats of
government are placed for all its progeny
that claim this antient title, mingling with
the power and purity of long past ages;
heir of primeval knowledge , inheritor of
all that ever was, joined to what is and
what be; parallel of ancientry.

Drawing sheet: 19.8 x 25 cm.
Poem sheet: 9.9 x 14.6 cm.
Frame: 53.5 x 40.7 cm.

Presented with a wash line mount and oval plaque (numbered 340) pinned to the frame.


This is one of two interesting wash drawings with added text. Both drawings are presented in frames dating from around 1900. The numbers on each of the frames seem to suggest they formed part of a series. Two comparable yet unidentified examples are in the Wordsworth Museum collection at Grasmere. The Wordsworth Trust – Link: 2021.15.17 and 2021.15.18

The other drawing ‘Windermere’ is being sold separately.


Unidentified / Unknown Artist