William Hogarth - Shakespeare's The Tempest - 1730

This first depiction of Caliban shows him doing a chore that is popularly used for depictions of him: carrying a bundle of wood. This Caliban also has a very monstrous body. His feet are webbed, his legs below the knees appear to be scaly, his arms appear to be long for his torso size, his skin looks stretchy, there’s some kind of growth on his forehead, and if we could see his fingernails they would probably actually be claws. The lack of clothing also shows his low, slave status in Prospero’s island society.

William Hogarth – Shakespeare’s The Tempest – 1730

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