Professional Women

 
A Harlot's Progress Plate V, The Death of the Harlot
Title A Harlot's Progress Plate V, The Death of the Harlot
Artist William Hogarth
Date 1732 (reprinted c. 1822)
Medium Etching and engraving
Location The Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections, Northwestern University

Moll is dying of syphilis, a disease that threatened the profession of prostitution in the eighteenth century. Depicted in head covering and robe reminiscent of images of the Virgin Mary, Moll commands our sympathy. Her cold-hearted landlady-another working woman-joins the tax collectors to claim her share from the dying harlot.

 

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