She is now working as a milliner and kindly pays Tom’s bail.
Although Sarah has saved Tom from the bailiffs, she cannot save him from himself.
The main character is Tom Rakewell—a rake being a old fashioned term for a man of loose morals or a womaniser.
Tom’s fellow inmates are trying various schemes to get enough money to buy their freedom.
However, their choice of projects cleverly illustrate just how impossible it was to get out of debt in Georgian Britain.
If you ever needed proof that the sex, booze and a rock’n’roll lifestyle was not a twentieth century invention, you need look no further than the satirical prints of William Hogarth.
He held up a moralising mirror to eighteenth-century Britain; the harlots, the womanisers—even the clergy could not escape.
Hogarth’s prints play out the sins of eighteenth-century London in a kind of visual theatre that was entirely new and novel in their day..
In this series, we meet the fresh faced Moll Hackabout as she arrives for the first time in London.
Here we can see Sarah sobbing into a hankie whilst holding her engagement ring in her hand.
Her mother stands behind her angrily clutching the love letters Tom once wrote to her daughter and he holds out a handful of coins in an attempt to get rid of them.
On the one side his wife derides him for squandering their fortune, on the other the beer-boy and the jailer harass him to settle his weekly bill.