William Blake

1757-1827 England-Romanticism

 

Brief Biography-William Blake was born in London's Broad Street the son of a successful hosier. When he was ten years old his father enrolled him in Henry Pars' drawing school, it was considered to be the best drawing school in London. His father preferred afterwards for financial reasons to enlist him as an apprentice to the engraver James Basire for a term of seven years. When his apprenticeship finished he made his living from engraving and joined the Royal Academy but took a dislike to life drawing and left the Academy. He married one Catherine Boucher whom his father disliked because she was illiterate. When his father died they moved in with his brother Robert next door to the old house in Broad Street. After a couple of years Robert tragically died of illness. At the point of Robert's death William claimed to have seen a vision of him ascending to heaven which led him to being in touch with the heavens for the rest of his life. He continued to do engravings but wasn't good at making a living from it, that is until his brother appeared to him one day and instructed him on how to do proper engravings. With the help of his wife and the tidings from his brother Robert he managed to make a modest living. He moved to a house in Lambeth in 1790 for seven years and it was here it is said he used to read poetry aloud in the garden with his wife whilst wearing only helmets. This was a happy period for him; it was when his best work was done. After Lambeth, he moved to Felpham in Sussex where he got into a fight with a soldier over the war with France which he didn't agree with. He was charged with assault and sedition and got off, however he had to leave Sussex. He moved to an Apartment in South Molton Street London where he lived a poor life for many years until he met the artists John Linnell, Samuel Palmer and John Varley. They encouraged him and gave him commissions up until his death in Fountain Court near the Strand in 1827.

 

Click an Image to Enlarge

The Ancient of Days

The Ancient of Days

Beatrice and Dante

Beatrice sddressing Dante

God Judging Adam

God Judging Adam

Nebuchadnezzar

Nebuchadnezzar

Good and Evil Angels

The Good and Evil Angels

jacob's ladder

jacob s ladder

the simoniac pope

the simoniac pope

glad day

Glad Day

Newton

Newton

Hell's Gate

Inscription over Hell's Gate

Job Confessing

Job Confessing his Presumption to God who Answers from the Whirlwind

Creating Adam

Elohim Creating Adam

Malevelence

Malevelence

The Three Fates

Hecate or the Three Fates

Richard III

Richard three and the Ghosts

Satan Watching

Satan Watching the Caresses of Adam

Book of Job

Book of Job When the Morning Stars Sang Together

Los Entering-

Los Entering the Grave

The Body of Abel

B ody of Abel found by Adam and Eve

Remembrance

Book of my Remembrance

The Four Zoas

The Four Zoas

Los

Los

The Ghost of a Flea

The Ghost of a Flea

The Witch of Endor

The Witch of Endor

Satan Smiting Job

Satan Smiting Job with Sore Boils

Great Red Dragon

Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with the Sun

Naomi Entreating-

Naomi Entreating Ruth and Orpah

Titania and Puck

Titania and Puck with Fairies Dancing

Shaken Senses

When the Senses are Shaken

The Lover's Whirlwind

The Lover's Whirlwind

Divine Comedy

Divine Comedy

antaeus sets down

antaeus sets down dante and virgil in the ninth circle

the blasphemer

capaneus the blasphemer

cerberus

cerberus

count ugolino

count ugolino and his sons in prision

dante conversing

dante conversing with farinata degli uberti

dante running-

dante running from three beasts is rescued by virgil

diomedes wrapped-

diomedes wrapped in the same flame

europe supported-

europe supported by africa and america by William Blake

the song of los

frontispiece to the song of los

lot and his daughters

lot and his daughters

the stygian lake-

the stygian lake with angry sinners fighting