- Museum number
- Object: London corresponding society alarm'd, -vide guilty consciences
Six brutal-looking men, much caricatured, sit round a table in a cellar, listening with apprehensive intentness to their chairman, who reads a paper: 'State Arrests - O'Conner Binns Evans Quigley'. He sits in an arm-chair, a grotesque ragged creature with sleeves rolled up; in his right hand is a candle taken from a candle-stick on the table. Beside him is a tankard inscribed: 'Tom Treason Hell-Fire Celler Chick Lane'. Against his chair leans an open book: 'Proceedings of the London Corresponding Society Ts Firebrand Secretary - Delegates - Forging Sam Barber Joe Dick Butcher Dissenting Nick Sheepshead Will Cut down Lary'. These names belong to the persons depicted: a barber sits on an upturned tub on the chairman's left, a comb in his ragged hair, a pair of tongs leaning against the tattered hat which lies beside him. Next (left) is a butcher, his steel hanging from his waist. All are grotesque denizens of the underworld. Two prints are on the brick wall, bust portraits of 'Horne Tooke' and 'Tom Payne'. Through an open door (right) is seen a flight of stairs, steeply ascending. 20 April 1798
Hand-coloured etching and aquatint
- Production date
Height: 254 millimetres
Width: 194 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', VII, 1942)
The arrest of O'Connor, John Binns, O'Coigley (or Quigley), and two others at Margate, 28 Feb., see BMSat 9189, led to arrests of members of the Corresponding Society in Manchester and London. Thomas Evans was arrested after Bow Street officers had surprised a meeting in a public house in Clerkenwell on the night of 18 Apr. This was a meeting of the United Englishmen which Benjamin Binns and Evans, secretary of the London Corresponding Society, had been attempting to form, bent on revolution with the help of France. On the following day the Committee of the Corresponding Society (in which, according to Place, only the refuse, with a few exceptions, remained) was arrested. On 30 Jan. 1798 an address to United Irishmen was passed by the Committee. The Society ceased to meet, and on 12 July 1799 was suppressed by name in an Act (29 George III, c. 79) against seditious and treasonable societies. F. Place in B.M. Add. MSS. 27808, ff. 91-111. For O'Coigley see S. Simms, in 'Journal of the Down and Connor Historical Society', viii. 41-75 (1937). See BMSat 9189, &c.
Grego, 'Gillray', p. 240. Wright and Evans, No. 197. Reprinted, 'G. W.G.', 1830.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1989 May-Sep, BM, Shadow of the Guillotine: Britain and French Revolution
1990 Jan-Mar, Manchester, Whitworth AG, Britain and French Revolution
1990 Jun-Sep, Vizille, Mus Rev/Francaise, Britain and French Revolution
1998 Apr-Aug, Belfast, Ulster Museum, 'Up in Arms'
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number