Figure 1.--Charles Hunt's "The Wayside Tinker" (1859) seems a contrived scene. I wonder how likely it would be for such emacuately dressed Victorian children to encounter tinkers on country strolls. Still it is a wonderful depiction of the contrast between dress of the poor and wealthy in Victorian England.
We do not yet know a great deal about Charles Hunt. He has left some fascinating Victorian images. One especially interesting image is "The Wayside Tinker" (1859). The scene shows an affluent Victorian family on a country stroll on a nice summer day, They have encountered a tinker. A tinker was an itinerant mender of pots and pans. They might also sharpen knives or maj=ke other repaits. They made oinly a meager income as can be seen by the way the tunker and boy here is dressed. The boy is probably his son. The scene seems a bit strained as I wonder how likely it would be for such emacuately dressed Victorian children to encounter tinkers on country strolls. Still it is a wonderful depiction of the contrast between dress of the poor and wealthy in Victorian England. The boy is particularly interesting. He has ringlets curls and wears a velet and lace outfit with patalettes more than two decades before the Little Lord Fauntleroy craze of the 1880s. He has a large black wide-brimmed hat. I'm not precisely sure what he is wearing, perhaps a tunic. With it he has frilly pantalettes, white stockings, and stap shoes. Hardly a garment for a walk along muddy country lanes. A reader writes, "The Hunt picture about meeting the tinker on a summers day is interesting because the tinker's boy appears to be looking at the wealthy kid with a hint of 'Just William ' mischief. The boy may be poor, but one gets the impression that he is glad that he is not dressed by the more affluent boy." Also note the affluent boy's hoop and stick.
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