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A book with etched frontispiece and wood engraved illustration on the title-page entitled: 'The Comic Blackstone' by Gilbert Abbott à Beckett with two illustrations by George Cruikshank.
Lettered on the title-page: "The Comic Blackstone by Gilbert Abbott à Beckett. With illustrations by George Cruikshank. London: Published at the Punch Office, 92 Fleet Street, MDCCCXLVI." The vignette illustration on the title-page, undescribed by Reid represents a barriester in Roman costume gesturing towards a cage of lions with caricatured human faces, their manes bearing resemblance to the wigs worn by judges and barristers. Signed "GC" and lettered at the bottom right: "See page 225."
The frontispiece illustration represents the interior of the temple of Themis, where the Lord Chancellor is dancing on the tightrope with skates, and in lieu of a pole, holding a pair of scales, each of which is inscribed Law and Equiry. Two lawyers stand on the ground and officiate as clowns. Lettered above the laughing figure of Justice: "The Comic" and "Blackstone" at the foot of the page. Two plinths on either side of the figure of Justice support owls perched on piles of books and mouments to John Doe and Richard Roe balanced on books carried on their heads.
Lettered "Designed and etched by" (l) and (r) "George Cruikshank."
On the inside pages: "London: Bradbury and Evans, Printers, Whitefriars." with a dedication to "the commissioners of the courts of request."
The book is bound in a claret textile and is decorated on the front cover with a figured design in gold which shows two barristers playing badiminton with anthropomorphic shuttlcocks, one inscribed "Pltf" and the other "Deft," the title lettered in gold above and the author's name below (see comments).
Letterpress, wood engraving and etching
- Production date
Height: 171 millimetres (approx. page height)
Width: 105 millimetres (approx. page width)
- Curator's comments
- Description based on GW Reid 'A descriptive catalogue of the works of George Cruikshank.' 1871. Reid does not describe the illustration on the title-page.
Reid gives the original publication date as 1843. According to Cohn (1) originally published in two parts. Subsequently reissued in claret cloth, 1 volume 1846. An edition, probably pirated of the parts was published in the USA with a Philadephia imprint 1846.
The present publication is the second edition bound in claret cloth and published by the Punch office.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
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