FRITH will be much thought of in some future day because he has illustrated the age in which we live, so that his pictures will remain valuable as far as they are true, while they will also be admired for their charming execution. . . . As Hogarth's scenes are for ever authorative, so in a lesser degree will be Frith's; but in a lesser degree only, as our pictorial newspapers now narrow the field for the painter in this respect. — William Bell Scott, Autobiographical Notes.

One of the greatest difficulties besetting me has always been the choice of subject. My inclination being strongly towards the illustration of modern life, I had read the works of Dickens in the hope of finding material for the exercise of any talent I might possess; but at the time the ugliness of modern dress frightened me, and it was not till the publication of Barnaby Rudge was presented to us, that I felt my opportunity had come, with the cherry-coIoured mantle and the hat and pink ribbons. [Frith quoted in Wallis, 56]

[••• = reproduction on this site.]

Large Social Panoramas

Genre Paintings, most with Several Figures

Artists and Models

Fancy and Costume Pictures, most set in Eighteenth Century

Subjects from English History

Portraits and Frith's Fair Ladies

The Road to Ruin — a Hogarthian series


Bills, Mark, and Vivien Knight, eds. William Powell Frith: Painting the Victorian Age. New Haven & London: Yale Univ. Press, 2006. 180 + xi pp. Hardback, £40.00. Paperback, £20.00. ISBN 0-300-12190-3. [Review by Jacqueline Banerjee, Contributing Editor, UK]

Frith, William Powell. My Autobiography and Reminiscences. 3 vols. London: Bentley & Son, 1887-88.

Newall, Christopher. A Celebration of British and European Painting of the 19th and 20th Centuries. London: Peter Nahum, nd [1999?]. Pp. 38-39.

Noakes, Aubrey. William Frith Extraordinary Victorian Painter: A Biographical and Critical Essay. London: Jupiter, 1978.

Panton, Mrs. J. E. [née Frith]. Leaves from a Life. 1908.

A Victorian Canvas: The Memoirs of W. P. Frith, R. A.. Ed. Nevile Wallis. London: Geoffrey Bles, 1957.

Last modified 7 November 2022