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Albert and Victoria’s collection shows photographers’ working methods

Joseph Cundall (1819-95)

Miss Heath and Miss Leclercq as Florizel and Perdita 1856

Wet collodion negative | 25.3 x 20.3 cm (whole object) | RCIN 2084938

10" x 8" glass plate negative showing actress Caroline Heath and actress Carlotta Leclercq as Florizel and Perdita in The Winter's Tale, Act V, Scene III. Leclercq is wearing a dress with veil and Heath is wearing a decorated short tunic, patterned tights, mantle, elm and short sword. They are both standing on a patterned carpet with their heads turned to the front, with Leclercq embracing Heath. The actor's costumes correspond to the final scenes of the play in which Florizel and Perdita fell to Sicilia.

Charles Kean staged his production of The Winter's Tale at the Princess's Theatre, Oxford Street in 1856. Queen Victoria went to see the play on four separate occasions. The casting of Caroline Heath in the male role of Florizel was unusual at this time; Kean further supported the casting of women in male roles with his production of The Tempest where a Miss Bufton played the part of Ferdinand. The glass plate negative has been photographed showing the coated side and therefore the image appears laterally reversed. A hand-coloured print from this negative exists in the Collection (RCIN 2909968).

  • Creator(s)

    Joseph Cundall (1819-95) (photographer)

    Caroline Heath (1835-87)
    Carlotta Leclercq (1838-93)
  • 25.3 x 20.3 cm (whole object)

  • Acquired by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert

  • Object type(s)
      • visual works
        • photographs
          • negatives
            • glass plate negatives
    • Science, Medicine and Technology
      • Industries, Crafts and Trades
        • Toys and Decorations
          • Theatrical costumes