Monday, 23 November 2015

W. Heath Robinson – part 6

William Heath Robinson (1872 – 1944) was an English illustrator and cartoonist, best known for his drawings of complicated machines for achieving simple objectives. “Heath Robinson Contraption” is a phrase that entered the language during WW1 in Britain, and later in the United States.

William wrote and illustrated three highly successful children’s books (The Adventures of Uncle Lubin 1902, Bill the Minder 1912, Peter Quip in Search of a Friend 1933) as well as illustrating numerous others.

In the run up to WW1, Robinson became known for a series of drawings in magazines such as The Sketch and The Tatler, many of which I will be featuring in this comprehensive look at his work.

This is part 6 of a 20 – part series on the works of W. Heath Robinson

1909 A Song of the English:

Front Cover

Title Page


Original Artwork
watercolour 51.1 x 25.4 cm 
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

*            *            *

1909 for "The Sketch"
In the Scrambling Trenches of an Egg Arsenal
pen and ink and watercolour Pen and ink 12.7 x 24.1 cm

1910 Collected Verse of Rudyard Kipling:

Front Cover

Frontispiece "We've sent out little Cupids all ashore"

Title Page

The Fires

Dedication from "Barrack Room Ballads"

I remember going crazy

Loud sang the sound of the jolly, jolly mariners

As out on the bridge she rolls

"Sister of mine, pass, free from shame. Pass with thy King to rest!"

The Three Decker

pen and ink 31.1 x 12.7 cm


An' the man that spied me first was our good old grinnin', grintin' Gunga Din

The explanation

She laid it into her breast

Barrack Room Ballads - Indian Service "Mandalay"

Mary, pity woman

Me that 'ave followed my trade in the place where the Lightnin's are made

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