Female figure study, standing pencil 15.5 x 10.2cm (6 1/8 x 4in).
PROVENANCE: Mrs Ridley-Colbourne, 1826, in an album of Constable drawings Sale, Sotheby's London, 15 November 1971, lot 50 With William Darby, May 1972
LITERATURE: G. Reynolds, The later paintings and drawings of John Constable, 1984, 20.66, reproduced as plate 187
There is no fully accepted dating for these figure studies by Constable. Whilst Graham Reynolds published the present sketch among the later paintings and drawings, it has similarities to drawings that are thought to be of an earlier date, such as 08.45 (plate 724) in The Early Paintings and Drawings of John Constable, which gives rise to an argument that it may date from as early as 1808.
A cutting from The Times of 1972 recounts how the drawing was discovered in the Ridley Colbourne album by William Darby after he had bought it, underneath an invitation to a Royal Academy dinner. He suspected the drawing may have been covered up by a Victorian owner because of what was regarded as its 'sensitive' subject matter.