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John Leech, His Life and Work. Vol. 1   By:

John Leech, His Life and Work. Vol. 1 by William Powell Frith

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JOHN LEECH

His Life and Work

[Illustration]

JOHN LEECH

His Life and Work

BY WILLIAM POWELL FRITH, R.A.

[Illustration]

WITH PORTRAIT AND NUMEROUS ILLUSTRATIONS

IN TWO VOLUMES VOL. I.

LONDON RICHARD BENTLEY AND SON Publishers in Ordinary to Her Majesty the Queen 1891

[ All rights reserved ]

I Dedicate this Book TO CHARLES F. ADAMS,

LEECH'S EARLIEST, WARMEST, AND MOST CONSTANT FRIEND; WITH MY GRATEFUL THANKS FOR THE INTEREST HE HAS TAKEN IN MY WORK, AND FOR THE VALUABLE ASSISTANCE AFFORDED IN THE EXECUTION OF IT.

PREFACE

I am very conscious of the many sins of commission and omission of which I have been guilty in my attempt to write the "Life and Work of John Leech"; but, that ingratitude may not figure amongst my shortcomings, I take advantage of the usual preface to acknowledge my obligations to friends and strangers from whom I have received assistance, and to express my warmest thanks for their kindness.

The time that has elapsed since Leech's death has terribly thinned the ranks of his friends and contemporaries; but the leveller has spared and dealt tenderly with one of his earliest and most constant friends, Mr. Charles F. Adams, whose store of Leech's letters, together with many pleasing reminiscences, have been placed unreservedly at my disposal. From Mr. Kitton's memoir of Leech I have derived, through the author's kindness, much advantage; and to Mr. Thornber, a well known collector of Leech's works, I owe the opportunity of selecting some of the best illustrations that grace the book.

I also desire to express my gratitude to the proprietors of Punch , who, though unable to comply with my unreasonable demand to the full extent of it, have given me most important help in my endeavours to do honour to the genius who was such an honour to Punch . I owe to those gentlemen no less than eight of the full page illustrations, to say nothing of numbers of small cuts.

I take this opportunity of thanking Mr. Grego, my neighbour Mr. McKenzie, Mr. Willert Beale, and Mr. Maitland for their help in various ways; not forgetting the Eton boy, whose anonymity I preserve according to his desire.

To Sir John Millais, Mr. Ashby Sterry, Mr. Horsley, Mr. Holman Hunt, and Mr. Cholmondeley Pennel I also offer my warmest acknowledgment for the papers they have so kindly contributed.

In conclusion, I permit myself a few words in explanation of that which I know will be laid to my charge, namely, that my book tells too little of Leech and too much of his work, and that it is chronologically deficient. In excuse I plead that the life of Leech as I knew it from its early days was, like that of most artists, entirely devoid of such incidents as would interest the public; and that from the difficulty of acquiring certain information, and the varying times at which it was supplied, chronological accuracy was impossible.

CONTENTS OF VOL. I.

CHAPTER PAGE

PROLOGUE 1

I. EARLY DAYS 3

II. EARLY WORK 20

III. MR. PERCIVAL LEIGH AND LEECH 75

IV. MEETING OF MULREADY AND LEECH 95

V. "THE PHYSIOLOGY OF EVENING PARTIES," BY ALBERT SMITH 104

VI. JOHN LEECH AND THE ETON BOY 130

VII. MR. SPONGE'S SPORTING TOUR 137

VIII. "THE MARCHIONESS OF BRINVILLIERS," BY ALBERT SMITH 151

IX. "THE MARCHIONESS OF BRINVILLIERS" CONTINUED 163

X. "A MAN MADE OF MONEY," BY DOUGLAS JERROLD 178

XI. ALBERT SMITH AND LEECH 206

XII. MR. ADAMS AND LEECH 233

XIII. "COMIC GRAMMAR" AND "COMIC HISTORY" 255

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

PAGE

PORTRAIT OF JOHN LEECH Frontispiece

HERCULES RETURNING FROM A FANCY BALL To face p... Continue reading book >>




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