Facts about the painting

Size 28" x 36"
Format Oil on Canvas
Signature Lower Right
Frame Not known

History of the painting

Date Auctioneer Lot Offer Price Sale Price
21 Jul 1982 Sotheby's London 191 £3,000-£5,000 £3,400
2 Nov 1990 Christie's London 308 £8,000-£12,000 £6,500
16 Mar 2011 Christie's Kensington 85 £5,000-£7,000  

Other observations

This painting was called "Lesson Time" when it was auctioned in 1982 and "Playing School" when it was auctioned in 1990 and again in 2011.

The school classroom was a common theme for Harry to paint, as can be seen by an 1895 Painting with the same name (of which we have not yet found an image), Playing At School 1900 and Maths for Beginners 1902. Like most of his paintings we cannot be sure of whether or not these names are originals.

It seems as the lesson is being given by Ruth, now aged 11 with Edwin, now aged 10 paying sharp attention. The other three children are probably visitors because none of them resemble Charles.

Ruth's straw boater is on the floor by her chair and the bench has been used in many scenes. Towards the back of the scene is a large round object which may be a barrel on its side.