Come Unto These Yellow Sands

THOMAS MAYBANK (died 1912) Biography

Come Unto These Yellow Sands (England, 1906)

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Oil on canvas
Signed and dated 1906


51.00cm high
74.00cm wide
(20.08 inches high)
(29.13 inches wide)
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C. Wood, Fairies in Victorian Art, Antique Collectors' Club, 2000, p.174 (illustrated)

Exhibition History

Royal Academy, London, Summer Exhibition, 1906, number 661

Description / Expertise

Thomas Maybank exhibited between 1898 and 1912. Exhibited: London, Royal Academy, 1906, number 661. Fairy illustrator and genre painter. He practised in Beckenham, Croydon and Esher, contributing to a number of startling fairy designs to Punch between 1902 and 1904. These include A Bank Holiday in Goblin Land, Coronation of Titania and New Year's Eve, all taking their inspiration from Doyle's work; pages of meticulous little figures drawn with pen and ink. He exhibited his work at the Royal Academy, Royal Society of British Artists, the Royal Hibernian Academy and the Royal Institute of Oil Painters.

Ariel's song from The Tempest, Act I, Scene ii:
Come unto these yellow sands,
And then take hands,
Curt'sied when you have and kissed,
(The wild waves whist)
Foot it featly here and there,
And sweet sprites the burden bear.

Prospero, Duke of Milan, with his daughter Miranda, has been expelled from his duchy, where he had avoided the task of government for the sake of devoting himself to secret learning, by his wicked brother, Antonio. At the opening of the play Prospero and Miranda have lived on a lonely island for many years, served by the brutish savage Caliban, and the sprite Ariel. By his magic powers, Prospero contrives a shipwreck on the island of his enemies - his brother Antonio, Alonso king of Naples who had conspired with Antonio, Alonso's wicked brother Sebastian and a few courtiers. Also shipwrecked, but separated from the others, is Ferdinand, the virtuous son of Alonso; each believes the other to be drowned. The situation is such that Prospero, if he wishes, can use his supernatural powers to execute vengeance on his enemies; instead, he uses it to bring about reconciliation and forgiveness. Ferdinand, after a brief trial in which he is subjected to austere labours, is united with Miranda. Alonso's company is also subjected to trials, but finally reunited with Ferdinand and reconciled to Prospero, who discloses himself. A subplot concerns the farcical attempt of Trinculo and Stephano, Alonso's servants, to rob Prospero of his instruments of magic, with the aid of Caliban.