The Feast Interrupted (1838) by Sir Edwin Landseer (1802-73). Watercolor. Source: “Studies and Sketches by Sir Edwin Landseer, R.A.” (1875): 257. “Lent by C. W. Mansel Lewis, Esq., Stradley , Llanelly.” [Click on image to enlarge it.] Formatting and text by George P. Landow. [You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the Hathi Trust and the University of Michigan and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document, or cite it in a print one.]

Commentary in the Art-Journal

At the British Institution Landseer exhibited, in 1838, a picture called ‘Rabbit and Stoat;’ it appeared again at the Manchester Art-Treasures Exhibition, in 1857, under title of ‘Hare and Weasel;' it was then the property of Mr. W. Wells, of Redleaf, for whom it is said to have been painted. In an annotated catalogue of Landseer’s works, by Mr. Algernon Graves, intended for publication, but not yet issued, it is remarked: “Mr. Jacob Bell, to show the errors of critics, says that this picture was reviewed as follows—‘We think the rabbit is too much like a hare, and we never saw a ferret that colour.’” Mr. Wells’s picture doubtless had its origin in the admirable sketch on this page—kindly lent to us by Mr. Mansel Lewis—— to which we have given the name of ‘The Feast Interrupted.’ A hare, as we consider it to he, lies dead in a field of turnips, and a stoat, or weasel—it might be either—has found its way to the body, and is about to make a meal off it, but is startled by hearing a noise of some kind: this is plain enough by the action of the animal. There is both life and death strikingly represented in the brilliant little drawing, chiefly executed in watercolours, from which the engraving is copied. [257]


“Studies and Sketches by Sir Edwin Landseer, R.A.” Art-Journal (1875): 257-60. Hathi Trust version of a copy in the University of Michigan Library. Web. 24 March 2014

Last modified 25 March 2014