- Museum number
- Object: Integrity retiring from office!
The resigning Ministers issue from the arched gateway of the 'Treasury', led by Pitt (right) who, with an oratorical gesture, holds out a document: 'Justice of Emancipating ye Catholicks'. Behind him is Dundas (Secretary of State for War), holding Pitt's right arm, and not in the usual Scottish dress (though he wears a tartan waistcoat). He holds a document: 'Advantages of the Union'; from his coat pocket issues a paper: 'Successes in the East'. Next walks Grenville (Foreign Secretary) in peer's robes holding a paper: 'Acquisitions from ye War. Malta, Cape of Good Hope, Dutch Islands' [Ceylon captured 1796]. Behind him walk Spencer (First Lord), holding 'Enemies Ships taken & Des[troyed]', and Loughboroug in his Chancellor's wig. Three heads are dimly visible in the shadow of the archway.
From the left the Opposition, in the guise of a plebeian rabble, advance towards the Treasury gate but are held back by a sturdy grenadier sentry at the point of the bayonet. He is back view, with 'G.R' on his busby, and is probably George III, possibly Addington. Facing him, against the Treasury wall, is his sentry-box, placarded: 'G.R Orders for keeping all improper Persons out of the Public Offices'. The rabble are led by Sheridan and Tierney; the former a butcher with cleaver raised to strike, the latter a ragged cobbler wearing a bonnet rouge; he is about to fling a cat which he holds by the tail. Behind them are Jekyll, as a chimney-sweep with brush and shovel, but wearing a barrister's wig and (tattered) gown, Bedford dressed as a jockey and holding out whip and cap (cf. BMSat 9261, &c), Nicholls and Tyrhwitt Jones, both holding up hats with tricolour cockades. At the back are Norfolk, about to hurl a bottle of wine, and Burdett. There is also raised above the crowd an arm which has just hurled a full tankard of 'Whitbread's Entire' [see BMSat 10421]. Other missiles include a lighted squib, a shillelagh, vegetables, and a book: 'Jacobin Charges, Speeches Essays'. Bedford cries: "Push on, dam'me! - work 'em! - its our Turn now!" The sentry answers: "Your Turn! - no, no! - whoever goes out You'll not come in!"
In the foreground, on the extreme left, are two dwarfish and ragged little newsboys blowing their horns; on the cap of one is 'Morning Chronicle' [see BMSat 9240]. Below the design:
"Men in conscious Virtue bold!
"Who dare their Honest purpose hold.
"Nor heed the Mob's tumultuous cries;
"And the vile rage of Jacobins - despise." 24 February 1801
Hand-coloured etching and aquatint
- Production date
Height: 260 millimetres
Width: 366 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', VIII, 1947)
Pitt's resignation, see BMSat 9705, &c, is attributed to its authentic cause. For the division in the Cabinet on the Catholic question, the King's opposition, and Pitt's resignation, see H.M.C., 'Dropmore Papers', vi. 434 ff.; Stanhope, 'Pitt', 1862, iii. 262 ff.; Fremantle, 'England in the Nineteenth Century, 1801-1805', pp. 251 ff.; Feiling, 'Second Tory Party', 1938, pp. 220-3. The absence of Fox is noteworthy, in view of Gillray's usual animus against him, but cf. BMSat 9715.
Grego, 'Gillray', 275-6 (reproduction). Wright and Evans, No. 258. Reprinted, 'G.W.G.', 1830.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2001/2 Jun-Jan, Belfast, Ulster Museum, Act of Union Bicentenary Exhibition
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number