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Hogarth's Marriage A-La-Mode (National Gallery Company) (National Gallery London) Hardcover – 1 Feb 2011

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Hogarth's Marriage A-La-Mode (National Gallery Company) (National Gallery London) + England in the Age of Hogarth
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 80 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press; Har/DVD edition (1 Feb. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1857095103
  • ISBN-13: 978-1857095104
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 19.7 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 928,501 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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"A lovely gift item." -New Jersey Star Ledger New Jersey Star Ledger

About the Author

Judy Egerton is a leading authority on British painting and has previously worked at the National Gallery, London, and the Tate. She was senior research fellow at the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art from 1998 to 2006. Alan Bennett is an actor and writer of plays and films. He is a former trustee of the National Gallery, London.

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Eleanor TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 11 Feb. 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Every detail of Hogarth's rich paintings and engravings is full of significance, providing opportunity for additional commentary, satire, and characterization. In this small glossy hardback (first published in 1997) Judy Egerton takes the reader through each of the six paintings which make up Marriage A-la-Mode, a cautionary tale of an arranged marriage, pointing out and explaining all the things one might ordinarily overlook. An introduction puts Hogarth and his work in context and there are appendices on the sale of the paintings and the engravings which Hogarth commissioned to be made from them.

This is a fascinating, readable, and enjoyable book. There are many enlargements from the paintings so that one can see the pins thriftily collected in a clerk's sleeve, for example, the bad taste ornaments purchased by the protagonists, or the paintings within paintings whose subject matter is always significant. There are also several illustrations from other works by Hogarth or those from different artists which enable one to see echoes and influences. Egerton also quotes from writers of the time, showing how Hogarth's concerns were reflected in other mediums.

The 40-minute DVD which accompanies the book is based on its text so there is a lot of repetition. Alan Bennett, however, is a pleasant narrator and one gets to see images and details not included in the book (as well as hearing the tune illustrated in the sheet music of Scene 2). My only criticism is that sometimes the painting was too dark or indistinct to make out the features described in the text (although the DVD has clearer images). The book would have been much improved if all the engravings had been included alongside the paintings, as they are sharper with the details more distinct. As it is, the book only includes the engraving of Scene 3.
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By Eileen Shaw TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 25 Mar. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This splendid book is a treat to read, and there is also a CD included with a commentary about the paintings/engravings by Alan Bennett. These aids help to set the works of art in context, revealing much about their provenance and the broadsides aimed at the prevailing social world inhabited by Hogarth. If he took aim and hit his targets with a certain amount of sanctimoniousness in the view of some people, he also had strong supporters, such as William Thackeray. In six paintings he mercilessly satirised the fashion for arranged marriages among the upper end of the bourgeoisie and indigent aristocracy. In his ‘Autobiographical Notes’ Hogarth did not preach, he simply exposed the veneer of hypocrisy behind the practices. He did this quietly, but devastatingly, once the signals and signs he incorporated within these works were deciphered. The six scenes he chose were begun in 1742 and completed the following year. He had previously completed two series of works: A Harlot’s Progress and A Rake’s Progress, both of which satirised low-life subjects, but in Marriage A-la-Mode his subjects were the wealthy – a rich but plebian Alderman is determined to marry his daughter into the aristocracy. From the offset, we are left in no doubt that the two young people care not a fig for each other. In fact the girl already has a lover and the young man is dissolute and probably already affected with the taint of syphillis. The lover – deliciously named Silvertongue, is an out and out rogue and the book takes us through the events of their lives with a growing sense of distaste and disgust.Read more ›
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Two Stars 19 April 2015
By Angela - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
ugh for a class
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