"the final, the best picture, showing Mohr in all his serene, confident, Olympian calmness"

Marx, Karl, philosopher and economist (1818-1883). Portrait photograph.

London, [1875].

143 x 97 mm. Albumen print, mounted on cardboard (169 x 107 mm) from the issuing studio, Mayall's Photographic Studio, London.


One of the four photos of Marx that the London photographer John Mayall jr. (1842-91) made in rapid sequence. On 25 August 1875, Mayall wrote to Marx that he had mailed him some of the prints the previous day and the remainder would follow in the course of the week.

Mayall was the son of the photographic pioneer John Jabez Edwin Mayall (1813-1901), who in 1860 took the first carte-de-visite photographs of Queen Victoria. The renowned Mayall studio had produced a fine portrait of Marx as early as 1872 (it was used as a frontispiece in the first livraison of the first French edition of "Das Kapital").

The four 1875 Mayall portraits went on to become Marx's most widely disseminated likeness: after his friend's death in 1883, Engels ordered 1200 prints to send to socialists all over the world, deciding that this was "the final, the best picture, showing Mohr [his nickname for Marx] in all his serene, confident, Olympian calmness".

Some chipping to edges, corners of cardboard somewhat bumped, but a fine example. The photograph was owned by the Longuet family (Charles Longuet was the husband of Karl Marx's oldest daughter Jenny Marx).

Stock Code: BN#49294 Tags: , , ,