Iohn Bull on a bed of roses

description below

“John Bull, a plebeian, stout and dishevelled, lies on his back on a tangle of large roses with vicious thorns. These are on a heap of stones and under the stump of a decayed oak tree (left). He exclaims: “Oh Lord! Oh Lord! if this be the Bed of Roses they make such a noise about I’d sooner lye with the Old Sow and her Farrow in the Dog Days! – My Dame will roar woundidly when she comes to bed! Ecod it’s as bad as lying on a Harrow upside down.” The stones (left to right) are ‘Expedition to Holland’ [1799, see British Museum Satires No. 9412, &c], ‘Expedition to Ferrol’, ‘Jobs and Contracts’, ‘Pension List’, ‘Indemnity for the past & Security for the Future’, ‘No Peace possible with the child and Champion of Jacobinism’, ‘Places’, ‘Subsidies’. The roses are: ‘Candle Tax’, ‘Hair Powder Tax’, ‘Hat Tax’, ‘Paper Tax’, ‘Snuff Tax’, ‘Game Tax’, ‘Wine Tax’, ‘Property Tax’, ‘Salt Tax’, ‘Land Tax’, ‘Stamp Tax’, ‘Assessed Taxes’, ‘Income Tax’, ‘Table Beer Tax’, ‘House Tax’, ‘Window Tax’, ‘Excise Duty’, ‘Horse Tax’, ‘Tobacco Tax’, ‘Soap Tax’, ‘Servant Tax’, ‘Malt Tax’, ‘Hop Tax’, ‘Sugar Tax’, ‘Legacy Tax’, ‘Tea Tax’, ‘Cyder Tax’. On the two extremities of the ‘bed’ are clusters of thorny buds; these are inscribed ‘1807’, ‘1808’, and [once] ‘1809’, those on the left being labelled ‘National Debt’. In the distance St. Paul’s is indicated. Bushes on the right are wind-swept.”–British Museum online catalogue.

 

  • Printmaker: Williams, Charles, active 1797-1830, printmaker.
  • Title: Iohn Bull on a bed of roses [graphic].
  • Publication: [London] : Pubd. July 1806 by Wm. Holland, Cockspur Street, [July 1806]

Catalog Record

806.07.00.01+

Acquired November 2020