- Museum number
- Object: A Dutch Toy!!!-Or, a pretty Play-thing for a Young Princess!!! Huzza
Princess Charlotte sits enthroned under a canopy, holding up a jointed puppet (a pantin) representing the Prince of Orange in military dress. She pulls the string that passes vertically through head and body so that arms and legs are extended. The puppet looks at the Princess; it holds out a flag surmounted by an orange and inscribed 'Orange Boven' [cf. No. 12102]. The Princess sits directed to the right, her left foot on a footstool, looking towards the spectator. Across her knee hangs a bust miniature portrait of a man inscribed 'Fitz Mo'. [The last two letters are doubtful.] At her foot is an open book inscribed 'Clarence's Dream'. She wears a dress defining her figure and a coronet with triple ostrich plume. On the back of the ornate arm-chair is a large marquis's coronet. She sits near an open French window (right) through which is seen a garden fountain, with water spurting from a cupid seated on a swan, as at Bagnigge Wells, see No. 9495.
Plate numbered 332.
- Production date
Height: 350 millimetres
Width: 245 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', IX, 1949)
Princess Charlotte broke off her engagement (see No. 12191) in a letter of 16 June, giving as reasons, that 'from recent circumstances ... I am perfectly convinced my interest is materially concerned with that of my Mother, and that my residence out of this Kingdom would be equally prejudicial to her interest as to my own'. This quickly became known; it was debated in Parliament on 20 June, and increased the Princess's popularity, see No. 12279. The breach, announced by Castlereagh on 23 June, was due, at least in part, to the machinations of Brougham. See 'Creevey Papers', ed. Maxwell, under date 21 June; Renier, 'Great Britain and the Establishment of the Kingdom of the Netherlands', 1930, pp. 179 ff., and 'The Ill-fated Princess', 1932, pp. 199 ff.; 'Parl. Deb.' xxviii. 104-11. According to Greville it was because she had suddenly fallen in love with Augustus of Prussia. 'Memoirs', 1938, ii. 319. Here it seems to be suggested that the Princess was attracted by the Marquis of Lansdowne (also Viscount FitzMaurice). 'Clarence's Dream' may be an allusion to the Duke's courtship of the Grand Duchess Catherine (see Webster, 'Foreign Policy of Castlereagh', i, 1931, pp. 288-90), or to his repeated failures to obtain a wife, cf. No. 11744, &c. A plate by Robert Cruikshank has the same title. See also Nos. 12282, 12288, 12303, 12453, 12700. Cf. No. 12273.
Reid, No. 340. Cohn, No. 1078. Van Stolk, No. 6336. Milan, No. 2664. Reproduced, Fuchs, p. 270.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number