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Sneyd, Walter, 1809–1888
Portraits of the Spruggins family / arranged by Richard Sucklethumkin Spruggins, Esq. ... MDCCCXXIX.
Great Britain, 1829.
Physical Description:
1 v. ([96] p.) : ill. ; 33 cm.
Rare Books and Manuscripts
PN6173 .M67 1829a+ Oversize
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
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Copyright Status:
Copyright Not Evaluated
Archives & Manuscripts
Walter Sneyd's Portraits of the Spruggins family (published in 1829) is a parody of contemporary family histories and similar works of nineteenth-century antiquaries, genealogists, and art historians. The work was for some time mis-attributed to Frances Parker, Countess of Morley. The text and illustrations were probably entirely the work of Sneyd, while Morley appears to have been responsible for drawing the lithographs from Sneyd's sketches. Sneyd (1809-1888) was an Oxford educated clergyman and a notable collector of medieval manuscripts. He was ordained in 1834, and thereafter lived at Denton House, near Oxford, until 1870, when he inherited Keele Hall, in Staffordshire. Cf. Nicolas Barker's introduction to the 1985 facsimile: The Spruggins gallery (Alburgh: Paradigm, 1985).
Bound in half red road and brown patterned cloth.
Illustrated manuscript of Walter Sneyd's Portraits of the Spruggins family. Although the manuscript is not signed by Sneyd (nor inscribed in any manner), it appears to be his own fair copy manuscript, perhaps used as the basis for the version published in 1829. Text is in a neat and uniform copperplate hand throughout, in pen and black ink. Illustrations are also in pen and black ink, with linear applications of gray wash.
Text and illustrations in the manuscript are nearly identical to that in the published work. In comparison to the printed edition, the manuscript has minor variations in layout. The portrait of Richard Sucklethumkin Spruggins, placed as the frontispiece in the printed version, is placed after the dedication in the manuscript. The pedigree of the Spruggins family, found just before the portrait of the present Mrs. Spruggins in the printed work, is placed at the very end in the manuscript. The content of the text appears to be nearly identical to the printed version. The only apparent variation is found in the description of Saliva Spruggins, who in the printed version is "sole heiress of Giles Sucklethumkin, Esq. of Berwick-upon-Tweed"; in the present manuscript, Giles is "of Spitalfields". In the manuscript, the copyist provides whimsical illustrated initials at the beginning of each page of text; these are omitted from the printed version. Many of the initials are composed of one or two human figures amusingly posed (with props) to form the shape of the initial letter. The full-page illustrations in the manuscript are highly finished and generally identical to those in the printed version. The somewhat crude lithographic versions in the printed edition lack the finer details and finesse of the corresponding illustrations in the manuscript.
Subject Terms:
Aristocracy (Political science) -- Great Britain -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Aristocracy (Social class) -- Great Britain -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Caricatures and cartoons -- Great Britain.
English wit and humor, Pictorial.
Genealogy -- Great Britain -- Parodies, imitations, etc.
Morley, Frances Parker, Countess of, 1781-1857.
Satire, English -- 19th century.
Sneyd, Walter, 1809-1888.
Humorous pictures.
Ink drawings.
Morley, Frances Parker, Countess of, 1781-1857, associated name.

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