ELIZABETH THOMPSON autograph Letter Signed.
Elizabeth Southerden Thompson, Lady Butler. English painter, noted for her paintings of battle scenes.
ALS. 2pp. Tuesday, June 8th, no year . To [William Luson] Thomas.
"I am sorry my supposed bright idea was a mistake. There is no help for it but to do something else, and I sincerely hope you wont be kept long waiting this time. I am anxiously looking out for a critique in the 'Graphic' of 'Preludes' by A.C. Thompson illustrated by yours very truly, Elizabeth Thompson."
8vo bifolium. 15.5 x 10 cms (6 x 4 inches). Remains of old album leaf adhering to blank verso of 2nd leaf. All else very good.
"Preludes" was the first book written by Elizabeth Thompson's sister, Alice, later to become famous as the poet, Alice Meynell. It was published by Henry S. King & Co in 1875 and was illustrated by Elizabeth Thompson. Luson Thomas was an artist and wood engraver who in 1869 had founded the illustrated periodical 'The Graphic'. Following the immense success in 1874 of Elizabeth Thompson's painting 'The Roll Call' (a roll call of soldiers after the Battle of Inkerman in the Crimean War), she was commissioned to supply work with a military theme to the Graphic. Elizabeth Thompson was probably the most celebrated and successful woman artist working in Britain in the Victorian era. She came within two votes of securing associate membership of the Royal Academy (no woman artist had ever come so close to storming this all male bastion) and, for a time, it was hoped she would usher in a new age of fine art where women would be on equal footing with their male counterparts. Alas! this was a false dawn and it was not until 1922 that the Academy admitted its first female associate.
Provenance: From the 19th century album compiled by the family of Dr James Copland F.R.S. (1791-1870), the noted Scottish physician and writer on medicine.