The golden image that Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up

“A sequel to British Museum Satires no. 6438. George III, seated on a balloon, points downwards with his sceptre to an image of Pitt (right) as a naked child, on a column which is inscribed ‘Family Presumption’. The king looks down at North, Fox, and Burke, saying, “I command you O Shadrach Mesech & Abednego!” The three stand (left) in attitudes expressing intense self-righteousness; they say: “Know O King we will not worship ye Golden Image”; on each head rests a tongue of flame. They stand outside a dilapidated building on the extreme left inscribed ‘St Stephens’, shored up by a beam, whose base is at their feet, inscribed ‘Resolutions Unrescinded’. From its coping-stone flies an ensign flag inscribed ‘Firm S.P.Q.B.’ The king’s balloon is inscribed ‘Prerogative’; its lower axis emits a blast inscribed ‘Gracious Answer’. Behind the balloon and Pitt are clouds inscribed ‘Breath of Popularity’. Pitt stands sucking his finger (cf. British Museum Satires no. 6417); on his head is a sugar-loaf surmounted by a flag inscribed ‘Feby 28′, an emblem of the Grocers’ Company which had entertained him on that day, see British Museum Satires no. 6442. Kneeling figures do obeisance before the image of Pitt, those in the foreground representing the least reputable trades: a lamplighter (left), with his ladder and oil-can, kneels in profile to the right; a butcher prostrates himself; a chimney-sweep kneels with clasped hands; a ragged scavenger, his shovel and basket beside him, kneels in profile to the left, the basket stands on a paper inscribed ‘[Worshipfu]ll Company of Scavenger[s]’. In the foreground lie papers inscribed ‘Garret Address’ (an allusion to the mock elections of Garratt), ‘Address’, and ‘The worshipfull Company of Chimney Sweepers’. A crowd of kneeling figures (left) is worshipping the idol; they hold standards, three of which are inscribed ‘Bristol’, ‘Westminster’, and ‘London’, representing the addresses to the king which had been compared by Fox to those made to Charles II, see British Museum Satires no. 6438, &c.”–British Museum online catalogue.

  • PrintmakerCollings, Samuel, printmaker.
  • TitleThe golden image that Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up [graphic] / Annibal Scratch del. et sculp.
  • Publication[London] : Pub. by W. Wells, No. 132 Fleet Street, March 11th, 1784.

Catalog Record

784.03.11.05+

Acquired May 2017

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