Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes
Album with the set of 80 etched plates, 1799
Bought from the Gow Fund with the aid of the Regional Fund administered by the Victoria & Albert Museum on behalf of the Museums and Galleries Commission 1986
This first edition set of Los caprichos (Fantasies) is bound with a contemporary handwritten text explaining how the plates satirise the vices and follies of Spanish society. This plate is titled Tell-tales and depicts 'The tale-bearing witches [who] are the most annoying in all witchcraft and the least intelligent in that art. If they really knew something they wouldn't get involved in telling tales.' Goya created the image by etching a combination of lines and aquatinted tone, which he then burnished to create highlights.