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The Offering (1908)

James Havard Thomas

graphite and watercolour on paper

Tate, London, Liverpool and St Ives

The Offering (1908)

Photo credit: Tate



Drawing and Watercolour


Graphite, Watercolour, Paper

Physical Object Description:

Pencil drawing of man with basket offering something to a farm women. Inscribed: ‘J. Havard Thomas del.’ bottom right. The paper has been joined across 4 1/4 (10·7) from bottom.. 


66 x 57.1 cm

Accession Number:



Presented by the Contemporary Art Society, 1917



Ownership history:

Carfax Gallery (Carfax & Co.), London, November 1909; gifted by Sir Michael Sadler (1861-1943) to the Contemporary Art Society, 1911; presented to the Tate Gallery, 1917
A graphite and watercolour study for the marble bas-relief sculpture, ‘An Offering’ by John Havard Thomas which was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1908. An earlier version, dated 1904 and entitled ‘The Offering’ was shown at the late sculptor’s 1922 memorial exhibition at the Leicester Galleries, London and was described as ‘plaster bronzed’. Thomas had departed for Italy soon after 1899 and lived in Naples and Capri, where he studied the lives of peasants, before re-settling in London in 1906. This drawing, where on the left a young boy, with a conical basket over his right arm offers a quadruple bunch of grapes with his left hand, to a young girl in a long dress, standing on the right with a hoe before her, was exhibited at the Carfax Gallery (Carfax & Co.), London in November 1909, where Robert Ross, co-founder of the Contemporary Art Society was a director. It was acquired by the art collector, patron and educator, Sir Michael Sadler (1861-1943) who gifted it to the new Contemporary Art Society in 1911. The CAS later presented it to the Tate in 1917.

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