‘Come up and see my etchings’ was a students catchphrase in the 1940s that rapidly gained a much wider currency throughout the English speaking world. It may find its root in Mae West’s ‘come up and see me sometime!’. But Prof. S. H. Monk writes: “I am certain that I knew this sentence by the mid-twenties. Actually, I knew no one who had a collection of etchings or who was suave enough to seduce a young thing in this manner. But the phrase certainly floated in and out of cartoons and jokes. To me, it has an 1890-ish or Edwardian tone, and I suspect that it existed in ‘sophisticated’ urban society before it ever reached a wide audience. I think that this can still sometimes be heard, but it is definitely ‘cliched’.”
On that fine note from the illustrious Prof Monk we bring you the Artlyst Top Ten etchings. A few of them still make me blush!
Illustrated: The toilet of Lampito By Aubrey Beardsley