Infant Shakespeare Attended by Nature and the Passions

Various artists/makers

Not on view

Romney conceived this secular adoration to illuminate Shakespeare’s genius. It focuses on the baby poet blessed by cloaked Nature and watched by figures that embody human emotions. Joy and Sorrow act as chief attendants, while Love, Hatred, and Jealousy watch from the left and Anger, Envy, and Fear stand at right—the group a reminder of the mature playwright’s astounding range. The engraver created this proof to check his progress, with some areas still undeveloped and the stippling at an early stage. When complete, the print introduced a 
folio-size set of engravings based on paintings shown at the publisher John Boydell’s Shakespeare Gallery in London’s Pall Mall.

Infant Shakespeare Attended by Nature and the Passions, Benjamin Smith (British, active 1786–1833), Stipple engraving; early trial state

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.