High life at five in the morning

description below

Print shows an interior view of a room; a duke has arrived home drunk at 5 a.m. (as shown on the longcase clock beside the door) accompanied by two attendants and watchman only to find his bedchamber occupied by another man. Through the open curtains around the bed can be seen a bare-breasted duchess. On the floor near the bed is an open book, “Memoirs of a woman of pleasure” (a reference to John Cleland’s Fanny Hill …) beside the chamber pot. As the duke with sword drawn, staggers forward, his rival climbs through a window in the background, leaving his clothes behind on a chair. A monkey dashes onto the table near the window on the heels of the husband’s rival but pulls down the tablecloth causing the items on the table to be strewn across the floor in the foreground; a book opened to pages “Chastity in the nobility a farce. Dedicated to their Graces the Duke & Dutchess xxx”, breaking a broken mirror, and sending the bottles and jars onto the floor. The bottles have labels “Viper drops” and “Surfeit water” and the jar is labeled “Lip salve”.

  • Title: High life at five in the morning [graphic].
  • Publication: [London] : [publisher not identified], publish’d according to act of Parliament, May 1st, 1769.

Catalog Record

769.05.01.01+

Acquired February 2022

A phantasmagoria, or, A review of old times

see description below

“A magician stands full face with uplifted sabre held over the heads of two figures from the past whom he has called up, and who stand within a magic circle. He displays them to their modern descendants, a tall stout Frenchman plainly dressed, wearing cocked hat and military boots, who stands with his arm on the shoulder of a thin, wretched, shambling, Englishman, small, ugly, and foppish, his hand thrust through an empty pocket. The magician has a beard, but features, cocked hat, consular dress, and sabre indicate Napoleon. He asks: “Are you satisfied Gentlemen?” The apparitions (left) are a grossly obese Englishman in old-fashioned dress, a cane hanging from his right wrist, and an ugly, tall, cadaverous, and foppish Frenchman holding a snuffbox. They say, respectively: “Is that my Grandson Jack? what a skeleton!!!”; “Ah mon Cousin, vat you eat de Beef & Plum Pudding!!” Their surprised successors exclaim: “Bless me! why I am a mere Stump of a man to him!!! and viable my Cousin look like de Frog & John Bull look like de Ox but Grace a Dieu times are Changed!!” Beside the magician are symbols of his art: a globe, a crocodile, a scroll, a skull. Within the circle and beside the French apparition is a frog.”–British Museum online catalogue.

  • Printmaker: Cruikshank, Isaac, 1756?-1811?, printmaker.
  • Title: A phantasmagoria, or, A review of old times [graphic] / I. Ck.
  • Publication: London : Pub. by T. Williamson, N. 20 Strand, London, March 9th, 1803.

Catalog Record

803.03.09.01+

Acquired March 2021

York commission warehouse

description below

“Mrs. Clarke stands before a large doorway inscribed Clark and Company. She wears a white short-sleeved dress with plumed cocked hat, gorget, and military sash, sword-belt and scabbard. The sword she holds over her head, saying, Now Gentlemen you had better be quick I have a few bargains to dispose of. as the partnership is disolving. She holds out a paper: List of Prices at Clark and C°’s Warehouse–Majority–£900. Company –7oo. Lieutenancy 400. Through the doorway behind her are seen great stacks of papers in her ‘warehouse’. These are labelled: Captains Commissions 500 each, Half-pay Commissions 200 each, Lieutenant, Colonel, Major, Cornet. On the wall is a notice: NB a sum wanted by way o Loan, terms to be seen within. On the right stands a man playing a fiddle, and saying with a sly smile, If you want de commission, you must give me de Note den I go play de Fiddle to de white petticoat. From his coat-pockets hang papers: Pay Sigr Cor[ri] for [word illegible] 200; and a piece of music: The Petticoat [see British Museum Satires No. 11220]. Beside him lies a large Note Book. Above his head hangs upside down a portrait: The Dukes Head; the upper part only of the Duke of York’s profile is visible, defaced by a black mark, the rest of the picture being cut off by the upper margin of the design. On the left two military bandsmen play a drum and fife. One asks: What tune shall we play now Jack the Duke of Yorks Marck [sic]? Answer: No No lets play she’s off with another.”–British Museum online catalogue.

 

  • Printmaker: Williams, Charles, active 1797-1830, printmaker.
  • Title: York commission warehouse [graphic].
  • Publication: [London] : Pubd. February 1809 by Walker, No. 7 Cornhill, [February 1809]

Catalog Record

809.02.00.02+

Acquired March 2020

A game at chess

description below“Bonaparte (left) and Cornwallis play chess. Bonaparte, not caricatured, alert and military, wearing his large plumed cocked hat, leans forward, pointing to his move; his left arm lies on the table and in his left hand is his sheathed sabre. He says: “Check to your King, remember it is not the first time, and I think a very few Manœuvres more will completely convince you that I am better acquainted with the Game I am playing than you are aware of.” Cornwallis, plump and civilian despite his regimentals and profession, sits without a hat, scratching his head apprehensively. He says: “Curse it I shall lose this Game; You are too much for me.” He wears his ribbon and star, ‘Honi soit’ on his garter. The chairs are symbolical: that of Bonaparte has ormolu laurel wreaths, the legs are formed of fasces and axes; that of Cornwallis, with plain oval back, suggests an English drawing-room.”–British Museum online catalogue.

 

  • Author: Williams, Charles, active 1797-1830, printmaker.
  • Title: A game at chess [graphic].
  • Publication: [London] : Pubd. Jany. 9th, 1802, by S.W. Fores, 50 Piccadilly, [9 January 1802]

Catalog Record

802.01.09.01+

Acquired September 2020

A North-ern ass

description below

“Satire on the election for County Durham, 14 April 1784: Sir Thomas Clavering and Sir John Upton, one headless, holding a caption labelled ‘The Irish Faction for ever’ and carrying the other, who has no feet, on his back, who says ‘I serv’d you as long as I could stand’ and carries captions lavelled ‘Coal owners Bill’ and ‘A command in India’; both seated on an ass facing left, which brays ‘Thus I go to Parliament and am not the first Ass that has farted for preferment, but this is dirty work and hard Labour’ and which has a collar labelled ‘I speak for my Master / Populus me sibilat at plaudo ipse domi’ and strips at the saddle labelled ‘Curse all Pitts / But a Coal-Pitt’; with the ass’ droppings falling on a crest with the motto ‘Diem Perdidi’; a mitre, crozier and sword and label ‘At rest’ on the ground in the centre, playing cards and papers labelled ‘Turnpike Speech / Election Speech’ to left; a milestone to right labelled ‘From Durham / T: C / J: E / 14 April 1784’.”–British Museum online catalogue.

 

  • Printmaker: Hutchinson, W., active 1773-1784, printmaker.
  • Title: A North-ern ass [graphic].
  • Publication: [London?] : [publisher not identified], [1784]

Catalog Record

784.00.00.80

Acquired November 2020

The female agent

description below

“Heading to etched verses. Mrs. Clarke, seated on a dais, receives applicants for commissions who advance through a doorway (left). She sits on a drum, wearing a cocked hat and military sash over a white dress, and holds up a sword. A short fat soldier holds over her head a Union flag with the white horse of Hanover. Two soldiers stand at attention with fixed bayonets behind her, and a fat trumpeter blows his trumpet. Another Union flag, without the white horse, flies from the corner of the large dais. On the wall hangs a notice: ‘Half-pay Commissions at Half Price for Ready Money’. The applicants press forward in a bunch, headed by a fat and gouty ‘cit’ hobbling on two sticks, behind whom is a chimneysweep. The first of three verses: ‘Come all you brave Fellows who wish for Promotion. Wether Captain or Colonel or a General’s your notion. A Warehouse I keep for the sale of Commissions, And our Prices you’ll find will suit all conditions, You’ll be treated with Honor if you secrecy mark Sir For my Master is Noble and I am his Clarke Sir, You’ll be treated &c.’ The last lines: ‘But forget not the ready (Gold or Notes) for pray mark! My Master wants Money, & so does his Clarke. But forget not &c.’ The verses are bordered by spears which serve as posts for plump purses, symmetrically attached to them.”–British Museum online catalogue.

  • Printmaker: Williams, Charles, active 1797-1830, printmaker.
  • Title: The female agent [graphic].
  • Publication: [London] : Pubd. March 1809 by Walker, No. 7 Cornhill, [March 1809]

Catalog Record

809.03.00.05+

Acquired June 2020

A political reflection

description below

“George IV as the ‘Great Babe’ lies asleep in his cradle rocked by Lady Conyngham, while Wellington, seated before a pier-glass, places the crown on his own head. The glass reflects the dark emaciated features of British Museum Satires No. 15520. The Duke wears uniform with boots and sword. On a table below the glass the sceptre and orb lie on a cushion. Lady Conyngham, with a towering coiffure as in British Museum Satires No. 15508, croons: Oh slumber my darling | The time may soon come | When thy rest may be broken | By Trumpet & Drum [the last three words in large letters]. The infant sucks a thumb; a gouty foot projects from the coverlet. On the floor is a line of toys: a sailing boat on wheels, a model of Buckingham Palace reconstructed by Nash as in British Museum Satires No. 15668, a giraffe (see British Museum Satires No. 15425), a Life Guard on a toy horse, a Foot-Guard, a dismantled or unfinished ship resting on a prostrate toy soldier. A napkin on a towel-horse (right) indicates a nursery.”–British Museum online catalogue.

 

  • Printmaker: Heath, William, 1795-1840, printmaker.
  • Title: A political reflection [graphic] / [man with an umbrella] Esqr.
  • Publication: [London] : Pub. by T. McLean, 26 Haymarket, London, [ca. February 1828]

Catalog Record

828.02.00.05+

Acquired June 2020

Slugs in a saw-pit hell to pay

Slugs in a saw-pit hell to pay . Detailed description below

“Two timorous duellists face each other at close quarters in a saw-pit, trembling and dropping their weapons, namely pistol and blunderbuss; each has a heap of weapons at his feet: sabres, rapier, pistol, more blunderbusses. The hair of both rises on their heads. One (left) is in uniform, the other (right), who is smaller, wears fashionable civilian dress with tasselled Hessian boots. A scroll extends above their heads inscribed: ‘Did you mean to Offend me? indeed Sir not I.–indeed Sir I’m very glad on’t!!!’ A spectator (right) looks over the edge of the pit, holding a bowl from which he blows soap bubbles, which float over the head of the civilian. The bubble in the pipe is inscribed ‘Puff’, suggesting a publicity campaign.”–British Museum online catalogue.

  • Printmaker: Heath, William, 1795-1840, printmaker.
  • Title: Slugs in a saw-pit hell to pay, or, The direful courage of Dolla Lolla [graphic].
  • Publication: [London] : Pub. Jan. 1810 by S.W. Fores, Picadilli [sic], [January 1810]

Catalog Record

810.01.00.01+

Acquired October 2018