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He Marries: A Rake's Progress, Plate 5

To escape his debts, the Rake marries an elderly, one-eyed, but undoubtedly wealthy woman. The poor prospects of this union are foretold by the Rake’s sideways glance to his bride’s pretty maid. Sarah Young, her infant, and her mother are prevented by the pew opener from interrupting this illegal wedding. The setting is Marylebone Old Church (identified on the plaque on the balcony), which in 1735 was outside of London and popular for secret or hasty marriages.

William George Sullivan; given to the John Herron Art Institute, now the Indianapolis Museum of Art, in 1930.

Object Information

creation date
etching and engraving
12-1/4 x 15-3/8 in. (image)
17-1/4 x 23 in. (sheet)
accession number
credit line
Gift of William George Sullivan