There Was an Old Man of Cape Horn…

el_horn-s

A variant version of both illustration and verse for ‘There was an Old Man of Cape Horn’. As first published in the 1846 edition of A Book of Nonsense, the limerick concludes “So he sat on a chair, till he died of despair, | That dolorous Man of Cape Horn.” The conclusion here reads “So he sate on a chair & tore off his hair – that intrinsic old man of Cape Horn”. Interestingly the Kraus manuscript (Koch Foundation) includes “He sate” before continuing “and behaved like a bear – That intrinsic…” This suggests that both the Krauss manuscript and the present piece are closely connected. The reverse of the leaf includes an abandoned and smudged drawing of a head.

This was sold at Sotheby’s.

Here is the Koch version, from Lear in the Original, p. 71:

el_horn-koch

“So he sat on a chair | And behaved like a bear” would in the end become attached to one of the old man from Peru, here in the version on p. 12 of Bosh and Nonsense:

el_peru

Notice however that the picture at the top is more similar to the final one for the 1846 Book of Nonsense version (here in a later coloured edition):

el_peru-1846

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One Response to There Was an Old Man of Cape Horn…

  1. Gerry Brisch says:

    Marco – have you seen the post on Lear in this blog?
    http://athosweblog.com/2016/02/10/1790-edward-lears-visit-in-1856/#comment-11179
    you would like it

    Gerry Brisch

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