The [Cha]mpion; or Even[ing] Adver[tiser] by Capt Hercules Vinegar, of Pall-mall
- The [Cha]mpion; or Even[ing] Adver[tiser] by Capt Hercules Vinegar, of Pall-mall
A medley print satirising the state of government in the closing stages of Robert Walpole's ministry. A number of printed sheets and playing-cards lying on the front page of the Champion or Evening Advertiser by "Capt. Hercules Vinegar, of Pall-mall" (i.e., Henry Fielding), on the masthead of which a kite, bearing the three crowns of the kingdoms of Britain, seizes the leg of Cardinal Fleury who holds a ribbon lettered Dunkirk and emits a "Fart for Tre[aties]". Faintly legible in reverse on either side of the masthead, intended to appear as though a damp sheet of printed paper had been laid there, are the words: "To Squire Freema[n]/Sir, The only Advantage/...is (except you Pay) ov[er...]/determined to .../Case before/... pay ..." In the centre is a music sheet entitled "Robin's Prophecy", addressed "To ye Inhabitants of Great Britain", and continuing "No visible Eclipse/At Fort St. George/ye Sun will be Eclipsed 27 of Novemr Duration 2h.30m", beneath which the head of Cardinal Fleury representing the moon, passes over that of Walpole representing the sun, and "At Gibraltar in Spain ye Moon will be Eclipsed 2 June Duran. 1h.32m., with Admiral Vernon against a map of Portobello, as the sun, eclipsing the Spanish moon; two lines of music with the verses, "War begets Poverty, Poverty Peace, Peace maketh Riches flow, Fate ne'er doth cease./Riches produce Pride, Pride is War's ground, War begetteth Poverty, ye World goes round.". On a separate sheet below is a joust between "Spain's Champion", a mouse with two Spanish hams as shields riding a tiger, beside a mouse-trap, and "Haddock for ye Merchants", a frog with a rat, crab and two caterpillars on its back riding a lobster. On the left are, from the top: three lines of music with the word "Spain"; a printed letter addrerssed to "Right Honourable Sir/Edinburgh, July 5, 1740" warning of foreign enemies and domestic crisis; a card with the queen of diamonds (Lady Yarmouth) beside which is a quotation from Proverbs warning against a flattering woman; the king of diamonds (George II) with a quotation from Kings warning against a dominating woman. On the right are, from the top: a sheet addressed, "To Mr Geo: Bickham junr. Engraver & Drawing Mar. at His House in Exeter Change, ye Strand" with a feigned stamp in a circle, "PD"; a portrait of the Duke of Argyll resting on a paper lettered, " By Heaven he shall not have a Scot of them; No, if a Scot would save his Soul, he shall not! Shak[espeare]" (Henry IV, Part 1); a sun in eclipse; a knave of diamonds (Robert Walpole) with a paper lettered with a quotation from Pope's Essay on Man, "Who wickedly is wise, or madly brave, Is but the more a Fool, the more a Knave. Stuck o'er with. Titles, & hung round wth. Strings That thou may'st be, by Kings, or Whores of Kings.". A pair of shaded spectacles rest on Walpole's face; the bridge lettered, "OLord! Open our Eyes.". 30 September 1740 Etching and engraving
- Published in: London
- (Europe,British Isles,England,London)
- Height: 292 millimetres
- Width: 362 millimetres
Inscription ContentLettered with the title and other captions in the image and in lower right 'Sold at ye Black-more's head strand, Sepr. 30. 1740'.
Annotated in ink on the recto 'July 1740'.
BM Satires 2452 and 2453 are different states of the same print, but there was clearly a yet earlier state traces of which can be seen on either side of the jousting animals at the foot of the sheet. The kite, and these jousting animals are based on Francis Barlow's illustration to Aesop's Fable: The Kite, the Frog and the Mouse (1687; see 1858,0626.378).
The head of Fleury appears to have been taken from BM Satires 2434.
Ralph Courteville, known as Ralph Freeman, was a propagandist on behalf of Sir Robert Walpole who wrote in the Daily Courant and The Gazetteer. Hercules Vinegar was a pseudonym used by Henry Fielding as author of the Champion from November 1739.
Stephens quotes (BM Satires 2453) an advertisement in the Daily Post, 26 September 1740 for what appears to be one of the states of this print: "A Political Medley; or The Champion loaded with his Honour's Creed, or Political Faith: Being a Curious Print, or Deceptio Visus; with the King and -- of Diamonds, the Curse of Scotland, the Knave of Diamonds. With a letter to the Electors of Great Britain on the Importance of an uncorrupted Parliament" published at the Blackamoor's Head, Strand at one shilling.
Satires British Stephens series
2014 May-Oct, Hannover, Wilhelm Busch Museum, 'The Hanoverians on Britain's Throne' PROMISED
- Representation of: Cardinal André Hercule de Fleury
- Representation of: John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll
- Representation of: Admiral Edward Vernon
- Representation of: George II, King of England
- Representation of: Robert Walpole, 1st Earl of Orford
- Representation of: Amalie Sophie Marianne von Wallmoden
- Associated with: Admiral Nicholas Haddock
- Associated with: William Shakespeare
- Associated with: Alexander Pope
- Associated with: Henry Fielding
- Associated with: Raphael Courteville
Prints & Drawings
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Object reference number: PPA198135
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