The Interior of Hades

W.M. Thackeray

1850

Hand coloured wood engraving, probably by William Linton

5½ x 4 inches

Pictorial frontispiece for Thackeray’s The Kickleburys on the Rhine.

The title gives this scene the portentousness of Dante, but the reality is banal. Instead of tormented souls, we have a collection of avaricious people contemplating the next move in a seedy gambling-house. Presented as the book’s frontispiece, the illustration establishes the text’s mock-heroic tone.

Scanned image and text by Simon Cooke.

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