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William Hogarth
The Inspection
Scene three from "Marriage A-la-Mode"
1743-1745
National Gallery, London
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SEXUAL MORES
by Michéle C. Cone



The 18th-century English genre painter and engraver William Hogarth (1697-1764) has long been unfavorably compared to his French counterparts, Jean-Antoine Watteau, François Boucher and Jean-Honoré Fragonard, for an all too redundant moralizing and an overly painstaking attention to anecdotal detail. His art is receiving renewed attention with a retrospective exhibition that was recently on view at the Musée du Louvre in Paris and that is soon to appear first at Tate Britain and then at La Caixa Forum in Madrid.

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