- Museum number
Object: Metropolitan political union
Object: Wall chalker to the above union -
Object: The governor's opinion
Object: Ah! you April fool!!!
Object: Failure - Drury Lane theatre
Object: John Bull in a shower
Object: Innocent employment for foreign princes
Object: Members of | Parliament
Object: Affairs of Portugal -
Object: The new beer measure -
Object: Grand steeple chase
Object: Borough interest!
Object: Curious method of laying petitions on the table
Object: Repeal of the leather tax
Object: Theatrical intelligence
Object: Vermin - No. 1
Object: The march of humanity.
Object: John Bull & the tax cart
Object: To nod upon his throne in solitary and dismal greatness -
Series: The Looking Glass No. 4
Etched caricature magazine of four pages on two leaves, in the form of a (monthly) newspaper; illustrations as follows. 1 April 1830
METROPOLITAN POLITICAL UNION (16079)
O'Connell leans over a railing, addressing a braying crowd below, all with asses' heads. Hunt stands behind him, holding up a pot of his blacking (see No. 16575). O'C: 'Brothers, for ye are my Brothers—lend me your ears, tunder & turf—ye put me mightily in mind of the Boys at Clare—faith ye'l not be what I take ye for—if you don't Subscribe & agitate down with your money thats the way to get A Radical Reform my darlings'. H.: 'We have got one thief among us already & shall soon have some more no doubt'. Below the title: 'Scene the Eagle Tavern—A Daniel still I say' ['Merchant of Venice', iv. i]. A satire on the meeting of 8 March, in the grounds of the Eagle Tavern, City Road, see No. 16070. According to Place the Metropolitan Union failed on account of the appointment of Hunt as Treasurer: 'nobody would sub¬scribe money to be put under the control, or the care of Mr. Hunt'. Add. MS. 27789, fo. 146. See No. 16080.
WALL CHALKER TO THE ABOVE UNION - (16080)
Hunt, with a bucket of his 'Blacking' and a big brush, paints huge letters on a wall placarded 'Commit No Nuisance: M . . . CHLESS . BL . . . and O' CONNE ...' See No. 16079.
THE GOVERNOR'S OPINION (16081)
George IV (scarcely caricatured) stands full-face, legs astride, holding hat and cane, dressed much as in No. 15895. He says: 'If you suffer yourselves to be Bought you deserve to be Sold'. Behind is a placard: 'General Election—Notice'. Advice to electors, oddly associated with the King. See No. 15914.
AH! YOU APRIL FOOL!!! (16479)
A pretty girl in evening dress, her hands clasped behind her, looks triumphantly over her shoulder.
FAILURE - DRURY LANE THEATRE (16480)
Kean stands behind the footlights bowing to the audience who are represented by a group of heads in the pit. He says: '"The winter coming on—and sickness growing—we will retire—Henry Vth'. (On 8 Mar. Kean attempted his last new Shakespeare part, Henry V, in which he broke down, apologizing for a defective memory. Cf. No. 16482.)
JOHN BULL IN A SHOWER (16085)
John Bull, a ragged yokel, stands under a decayed and dripping tree inscribed 'Parliament' with heavy rain pouring on his head. The rain is inscribed 'Tax [many times], Malt Duty, Land Tax, Duties on Horses, Assessed Tax, Duties on Male Servants, Duties Houses, Horse Tax, Beer Tax, Game duties, Duties on Carriages, Hop duty'. He is surrounded by a ring of large frogs, enjoying the rain, and opening their mouths for 'Place, Pension' or 'Sinecure'. After the title: 'They may well say its owing to the Weather this old tree used to give one shelter—but it is now too Rotten'. An illustration of the Reform agitation and its association with the demand for reduction of taxation and abolition of sinecures, &c. Cf. No. 16073.
INNOCENT EMPLOYMENT FOR FOREIGN PRINCES (16481)
Prince Schwartzenburg laces Lady Ellenborough's stays; through a window (right) is seen a face peeping from a window across the street. An illustration of evidence given in Ellenborough's Divorce Bill, see No. 16106.
MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT (16082)
A grotesque face, much contorted, with closed eyes, open mouth, and pro¬jecting ears, each ear inscribed 'Hear', the 'H' partly scored through. The other features are 'Ayes, Noes', and 'Mouth'. Above: 'A mighty and fearful Head they are / As ever offer'd foul play in a state—Shakspe . . .' ['1 Hen. IV, in. ii, misquoted.]
AFFAIRS OF PORTUGAL - (16083)
Lord Aberdeen stands facing crowded benches (right), with many peers standing and shouting for 'Papers, All the Papers'. He holds behind his back large papers inscribed 'Corresponde[nce]—Don Predo [sic]—Don Miguel', and says 'Don't you wish you may get 'em'. On 23 March Lord Clanricarde called for further papers on Terceira, see No. 15679, &c, especially on the protest of Saldanha, and proposed a series of resolutions. Pari. Deb., N.s. xxiii. 737 ff.
A Chelsea pensioner on two stumps, with a patch over his eye, and a hook for his right hand, holds out towards Wellington a paper inscribed 'Peninsula, Waterloo'. The Duke, peering from a small window, says: 'There is a mistake of Two Days in your length of service—your Sixpence pr day can no longer be paid—we can't afford it.' Cf. No. 16066.
THE NEW BEER MEASURE - (16086)
Wellington and Peel walk (left to right), the former looking back to hold out a large tankard, inscribed 'Beer' and marked with a crown, to a dustman wearing a fantail hat with a pipe stuck in it. The Duke wears patched and ragged uniform with a shapeless cap; Peel, who furtively takes his arm, is dressed like the 'cad' of No. 15734, and holds a pipe. The dustman: 'Come that ere's a werry good un, you two covey's dipt your beaks in—and now there's none of the heavy to be had—you offers me the Pot. I vunder you ant' ashamed on it—howsomehever it shows your breeding'.
GRAND STEEPLE CHASE (16087)
Parsons of varying type, paunchy or lean, mostly bewigged, ride in a steeplechase towards a distant steeple among trees, on which is poised a huge mitre surrounded by carrion birds.
An illustration of the popular attitude to the 'higher clergy' as pluralists and tithe-grabbers, and the especial unpopularity of bishops. See J. R. M. Butler, The Passing of the Great Reform Bill, 1914, pp. 113, 251. Cf. No. 16805, &c.
BOROUGH INTEREST! (16088)
A clod-like yokel holds back an eager cur from rabbits which are sitting by their burrows or racing down a steep hill.
CURIOUS METHOD OF LAYING PETITIONS ON THE TABLE (16089)
One bewigged Clerk holds a big bundle of bulky petitions which he is about to deposit on the Table where a second Clerk is writing. A third uses the mace to push more petitions under the Table. The Speaker, his words floating towards the Ministerial benches, asks 'Aye or No'. Below: 'why not say Under the Table—'
REPEAL OF THE LEATHER TAX (16090)
A ragged fellow reads a placard, the heading of which is the only title. It con¬tinues: 'now is your time Johnny Wellington Boots 6d A Pair!!!' He says: 'But where is a poor fellow—to get the Sixpence'. Behind the placard is a bow-fronted shop-window, surmounted with the Royal Arms. The leather tax was repealed in the Budget (cf. No. 16069) as a relief to the agricultural and manufacturing classes. Parl. Deb., N.S. xxiii. 313-16. See No. 16092.
THEATRICAL INTELLIGENCE (16482)
Kean as Richard III (see No. 12325) gesticulates, saying, 'Richard's himself again'. Behind, a side of the tent is indicated. Cf. No. 16480.
VERMIN - NO. 1 (16091)
A rat with Burdett's head sits in profile to the right, on ground inscribed 'Westminster', holding out its paws for a large baron's coronet which hangs on a string; his cap of Liberty falls off. In the background is the Abbey. Below: 'The Rat is one of mans greatest nuisances so prolific is it, and so rapidly does it multiply that Islands and even whole Continents have been devoured by them— they are easily caught'. Burdett refused a peerage from Canning in 1827, from Grey in 1831. Patterson, Burdett and. his Times, ii. 564, 592. He had long been losing the confidence of the Westminster Radicals, see No. 16058, &c.
THE MARCH OF HUMANITY (16483)
A dog, three-quarter length, wearing a dressing-gown, sits in a chair reading a paper: 'The Fire King—engages to poison Two Dogs, one he will suffer to die—the other after undergoing the most horrible agonies for two hours—will be recover'd—only 3s admittance—Gentlemen to bring their own Dogs'. It turns its head to the spectator, saying with a startled stare, 'Good Gracious—how shocking—what can Mr Martin be about'. Below: 'He has no fellow feeling. Stop this for shame— if not for Charity'.
JOHN BULL & THE TAX CART (16092)
A two-wheeled trap, inscribed 'Common Tax Cart', is drawn (left to right) by a galloping horse with feathered wings inscribed 'Ministerial Influence'. The horse is 'Parliament', and its eyes are covered by box-like blinkers. It is being chased by a snorting bull, and is driven by Peel who lashes the horse, shouting 'Come up'. Wellington stands behind him, saying, 'go it Bob—get him over the ground as fast as you can'. Goulburn, in his Chancellor of the Exchequer's gown, stands at the back throwing out three large papers to the bull: 'Beer Tax, Leather Tax, Cider Tax'; he says: 'These will stop his roaring till we get out of the way'.
For the repeal of the Beer Tax see No. 16086, &c.; its corollary was the repeal of the Cider Tax. For the Leather Tax see No. 16090. 'Tax Cart' (properly taxed cart) is a cart used for agricultural or trade purposes on which taxation was first reduced (1795), then remitted. Cf. No. 16557.
TO NOD UPON HIS THRONE... (16093)
Prince Leopold, a crowned colossus in Greek costume, sits gloomily on rocky mountain peaks which form a seat, his feet resting on a coastal district: 'Morea'. Suspended by a thread, the point touching his crown, is a Damocles-dagger; words float upwards from the new king's head: 'I am Monarch of all I survey' [from Cowper's 'Lines on Solitude', implying that he is on a desert island]. Derelict hulks lie on the shore; there is a deserted plough, and (left and right) two small ruined towns, 'Arta' and 'Volo'. Above the design: '—"For within the hollow crown, / That rounds the mortal temples of a King, / Keeps Death his court: ['Richard II', in. ii]. For Leopold's acceptance of the Greek crown, conditions, and increasing demands and vacillation until his final refusal, see Ellenborough, Diary, ii. 160, 183, 195-7, 199, 213-53 passim. See No. 16010, &c.
Starving men, women, and children stand or sit disconsolately in an open space bordered by neglected buildings. In the background is a mast with furled sail. Below: 'The Sharers are numerous in this Concern'. For national distress see No. 16032, &c. Hungerford Market (on the site of Charing Cross Station) was built in 1680, rebuilt 1831-3.
Scarlett, stripped to the waist and badly scarred, is tied to a triangle of spears placarded 'Wellin[gton]', while Wetherell, in wig and gown, savagely plies a weighted scourge. From Scarlett's closed lips issues the word 'Ego'. Above: 'This from a Brother in Law'. See No. 16068.
- Production date
Height: 379 millimetres
Width: 256 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Notes to No. 16086:
In his Budget speech (15 Mar.) Goulburn announced the repeal of the beer tax, amounting to 3/4d in the quart to the consumer, as a relief to the most distressed classes. The remission of duty would involve the free sale of beer, without licence, both changes to date from 10 Oct., the time of the renewal of licences. Parl. Deb., N.s. xxiii. 310 ff. Many petitions had been received for the repeal of the beer and malt duties. This was estimated as a loss to the exchequer of £3,000,000, and a gift of c. £1 a year to the average labouring household. J. H. Clapham, Econ. Hist, of Modern Britain, 1930, p. 560. The Beer Act was praised in Wade's Black Book Extraordinary, 1831, p. 492; cf. No. 15979. See Nos. 16092, 16100, 16105, 16365, 16382, 16383, 16511.
Notes to No. 16483:
The 'Fire King' was Chabert, an impostor who gave exhibitions of fire-eating, &c. On 4 Feb. 1830 he had been exposed by Wakley at a public performance with two dogs. Sprigge, Life and Times of T. Wakley, pp. 441-4. The title parodies 'the March of Intellect', see No. 15604, &c. For 'Humanity Martin' see No. 14798, &c.
Bound in a volume ("The Looking Glass, Vol. I") containing nos. 1 to 12 for 1830.Vols. I to VII (1830 to 1836) are kept at 298.d.12 to 18.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number