- Museum number
- Object: Dum Vivo Thrivo (While I live, I thrive)
A satirical coat-of-arms for a lawyers in the form of a scroll headed "Noverint Universi" on which is a scene in a lawyer's office where he is taking money from two opposing clients, below is a book lettered "Coke upon Littleton" and three coins, five seals are suspended from the lower edge of the scroll. The crest is a fox wearing legal garb emerging from a mace and surrounded by scrolls, deeds, writs, etc. lettered with legal phrases. The supporters are two countrymen: on the left, the successful client holds a bag of money and stands on a plough; on the right, the loser, stands on a harrow, holding up an empty purse. Below is the motto, "Dum Vivo Thrivo" and sixteen lines of engraved verse in two columns.
Etching and engraving
- Production date
Height: 223 millimetres (image)
Height: 309 millimetres (trimmed)
Width: 208 millimetres (trimmed to image)
- Curator's comments
- The print was dated by Hawkins to 1692, but was actually made a few years later: it was advertised as "lately publish'd", together with "The Ass-Age" (BM Satires 1475), in The Post Boy, February 21-24 1707/8 "sold by J.Morphew near Stationers Hall ... the Lawyers Coat of Arms, dedicated to their Clients, for the use of Michaelmas Term." (quoted by C.H.L. George, Topical Portrait Print Advertising in London Newspapers and The Term Catalogues: 1660-1714, Ph.D. thesis, Durham, 2005 (http:// newspaperadvertisements.wordpress.com).
Malcolm Jones (personal communication, May 2009) notes a related woodcut in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, shelfmark Harding 2° (1) with the title "The lawyers coat of arms, dedicated to their clients for the use of Michaelmas Ter[m]". He points out that prints described as ""The Lawyers Coat of Arms" are listed in Cluer Dicey's catalogues of 1754 and 1764 (cf. Dicey biography) both as woodcuts and "Copper Royals", although the latter apparently had a different text from the one on the present print ("a description of a Plaintiff and Defendant, after a seven Years Law-suit") and so may have been an altogether different version of the subject. Jones (in M.Jones 'The Print in Early Modern England: An Historical Oversight', New Haven and London, 2010, pp.297) also notes that the image was transfer printed circa 1760 onto the inside of Liverpool delftware punch-bowls.
Sir Edward Coke's commentary (1628) on Sir Thomas Littleton's treatise on the law of property (c.1481) was the major authority on the subject until the 19th century.
The tradition of satirical coats of arms was well established. For earlier seventeenth-century examples, see 1880,0710.933 and 1868,0808.13205.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number