- Museum number
Satirical pamphlet of 32 pages on the Queen Caroline affair entitled:
'The royal letter bag, containing familiar epistles from royal personages, ministers of state, bishops, generals,discarded mistresses, Italian witnesses &c.&c. Relative to the Queen and other important state affairs'
The pamphlet is composed of a range of satirical letters, mainly in verse, which parody the words and behaviours of key figures including George IV his ministers and witnesses at the Queen’s trial.
1. The title page illustration, BM Satires 13943, in imitation of T. Moore, represents a courier galloping from Windsor, preceded by four rats, and urged on by the Devil, who stands by the horse's heels cracking a whip. Strapped to the courier's back is a large portmanteau: 'Milan Commission' [see BM Satires No. 13755, &c.].
Lettered beneath the illustration:
“Fourth Edition, Published from the Originals. London: Sold by T. Dolby, 299, Strand, and all booksellers, Printed by J Swan, 76 Fleet Street, 1820, Five Shillings.”
2. BM Satires 13944. 'A royal milling' represents a pugilistic encounter between George IV, who is knocked backwards, losing his crown, and the Duke of York. Bloomfield, with a bottle of 'Bra[ndy]', supports the King. Behind him (left) are two women, Lady Conyng-ham, and a cook with a gridiron (cf. BM Satires No. 13208, &c.). Two officers stand behind the Duke. The (supposed) quarrel arose from the Duke's (alleged) protest against the King's intention to divorce the Queen and remarry,( see BM Satires No. 13789, &c.)
3. BM Satires 13945. 'A pair of respectable witnesses.' On the 'Green Bag' (see No. 13735, &c.) are the (sulky) features and whiskers of George IV; from it issue two witnesses, two serpents, a leech (Leach, see BM Satires No. 13740), and the words 'Lies' (three times), 'Filth', 'Obscenity'. The witnesses are Majocchi dressed as a courier and saying "Non mi ricordo" [see BM Satires No. 13827], and Demont saying "Je ne me rapelle pas" [see BM Satires No. 13857]. Each holds a money-bag inscribed 'Bribery'; in Demont's hair is a fillet inscribed 'Perjury'. Seated round the bag and smiling approvingly are Sidmouth, Eldon, Castlereagh, and (?) Wilberforce.
Lettered at the end of the pamphlet:
“Printed by J. Swan, 76 Fleet Street, London.”
c. October-November 1820
Wood-engraving, vignette on titlepage to a letterpress pamphlet
- Production date
Height: 217 millimetres (approx. page size)
Width: 134 millimetres (approx. page size)
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', X, 1952)
Bound as part of 'Political Tracts Volume 9.' Number 9 of 10 volumes of political pamphlets, published circa 1819- 1822. Volume 9 consists mainly of duplicates and various editions of pamphlets bound in Vols 1-8.
For another edition of this pamphlet see, 'Political Tracts Volume 2.'
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- The collection of satirical pamphlets illustrated by "the Cruikshanks" (ie: George and Isaac Robert) acquired from Harvey, 1863,1114. 90-217, have been bound in 'Political Tracts' Volumes 8 to 9.
They are bound in a different order to that in which they are listed in the Prints and Drawings Department's collection register. Pamphlets which are not illustrated and/ or not attributed to George or Isaac Robert Cruikshank also form part this collection.
The 10 volumes of 'Political Tracts' appear to have been created some years after these pamphlets were purchased. Volumes 1-7 are comprised of pamphlets from the Maskelyne collection acquired by the Museum in 1865. The binding of these pamphlets into volumes of 'Political Tracts.' may have been related to G.W. Reid's 'Catalogue of Cruikshank's Work.' 1871. There is an additional 10th volume containing pamphlets with unknown acquisition sources.
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number