Britannia between death and the doctor’s

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A satire of Pitt’s return to office in 1804. Pitt is shown in the chamber of Britannia. Britannia sits listlessly on a bed, holding a sword in one hand. Next to her, leaning against the bed, is her shield and olive branches. Pitt holds aloft a bottle labelled “Constitutional Restorative” as he kicks another man, a caricature of Addington, through the door. Addington is in the process of dropping a bottle labelled “Composing Draft”. With his other foot, Pitt steps on the face of a flailing and prostrate Fox, who holds a bottle labelled “Rebublican Balsam” towards Britannia. From Fox’s pocket dice and a dice container labelled “Whig Pills” have fallen. Emerging from behind the bed curtains, the figure of Death, a skeleton with the face and plumed bicorne of Napoleon, overturns a table and upsets bottles of medicine and points his sword toward the unsuspecting Britannia.

  • Printmaker: Gillray, James, 1756-1815, printmaker, artist.
  • Title: Britannia between death and the doctor’s [sic] [graphic] : “Death may decide when doctor’s [sic] disagree” / Js. Gillray inv. et fect.
  • Published: [London] : Publish’d May 20th 1804 by H. Humphrey, [20 May 1804]

Catalog Record & Digital Collection

804.05.20.02+

Acquired November 2013

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