- Museum number
- Object: Political stag hunt or the M-l (Ministerial) hounds in full cry
A huntsman (left), mounted on a horse snorting flames which are inscribed "Faction", preceded by the "ministerial hounds", chases a stag, inscribed "Constitution". The huntsman is Bate, afterwards Bate Dudley, representing the Ministerial Press. He is dressed like the body of news vendors with drums and trumpets to advertise the 'Morning Post' seen by Walpole in Nov. 1776 (see BMSat 5550), and is blowing a trumpet. His cap is inscribed "Post", round his shoulders is slung a bundle inscribed "Materials for Post", made up of "Satire", "Malice", "Scandal", "Falsehood". From his pocket hangs a paper, "The Art of Lying made Easy by B." He leaps a fence inscribed "Bounds of Discretion". The hounds are taking a circular course as the stag has doubled back and is advancing towards a ravine, a signpost pointing "To the Vale of Oblivion". The stag says "I shall fall like Lucifer never to Hope again." The two foremost hounds have human faces; the first (North) says "We shall soon be in at the Death - She can go no further N . . . h". The next, inscribed "Twitcher" (Lord Sandwich), says "I have long had her Destruction at Heart & the sooner the better". The third (Lord G. Germain) says, "I run almost as fast now as I did at Minden" (cf. BMSat 5675). Next is a dog with a judge's wig (Mansfield) saying, "She will find no Covert near Caen Wood" (cf. BMSat 4885). A dog inscribed "L. S." says "I am the sort to go Thro Thick & Thin"; perhaps intended for Lord Stormont, Secretary of State, and Mansfield's nephew, or possibly for Lovel Stanhope, who was appointed Comptroller of the Board of Green Cloth in September 1780. A dog with the face of a demon, [Mr Hawkins has written "Jer. Dyson" on this dog, but he died in 1776] probably representing the Devil as in BMSat 5675, says, "I allways was firm to the cause". The next dog is inscribed "Log" and is saying "I stick at Nothing". This is evidently Sir Hugh Palliser, whose log-book was found at his court martial to have been altered, see BMSat 5536, 5537. The last dog says "I am Adam'd Good Dog but ye last Fox Hunt Had like to be Death of me". He is William Adam, whose duel with Fox on 29 Nov. 1779 roused much bitterness against the ministry, see BMSat 5575, 5625. The scene is a wooded hill and the going is rough. Behind Bate on the left is the partly ruined "Templum Libertatis" overgrown with shrubs and shored up by timbers inscribed "Richmond", "Barre", "Camden", "Burke & Fox", "Wilks". Beneath the design is etched:
"Hungry Dogs the old Proverbs say
Eat dirty Pudding, when in their way
So Will these Dogs as oft we are told
Catch at any thing which looks like Gold.
Or bears the least Aspect of doing
Good for themselves tho their Country ruin.
Tis little Rogues submit to fate
Whilst ye Great enjoy ye World in State." n.d. c.1780
- Production date
Height: 248 millimetres
Width: 353 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', V, 1935)
Bate was prosecuted by the Duke of Richmond for some libellous Queries published in the 'Morning Post' of 25 Feb. 1780; on 1 Nov. 1780 he started the 'Morning Herald', an anti-ministerialist paper, supporting the party of the Prince of Wales. Lord North admitted that his advocacy of the ministry in the 'Morning Post' was "perhaps too warm", see BMSat 5550, 5666.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number