BLAKE, William
(b. 1757, London, d. 1827, London)

Elisha in the Chamber on the Wall

c. 1820
Sepia wash over pencil, 243 x 210 mm
Tate Gallery, London

Among Blake's metaphors for creative vision was the Old Testament prophet Elisha, foretelling her future son to the Shunammite woman who had given him a room for his meditations. There can be little doubt that Blake's bearded seer in his chamber was a more revealing record of himself and his art than a literal portrayal of his features could ever be.