- Museum number
- Object: A meeting of the female canvassers in Covent Garden.
Mrs. Hobart (left), enormously fat, and the Duchess of Devonshire (right) stand facing each other in profile. Mrs. Hobart holds under her right arm a fat badger with the head of Wray, his collar inscribed 'Ministerial Badger'. The Duchess holds a fox under her left arm; the animals snarl at each other; the fox (Fox) says, "Poor Badger! Where's your scrub majority now!" The badger answers, "A fig for your Electors! Mountmorres is acquainted with the whole bunch and he swears you'll find them, my cunning Fox, sour grapes in the scrutiny." Mrs. Hobart says, "I shall burst with indignation". Behind her and hung on a wall is a downward-hanging flag inscribed 'Ensign of Disappointment', with a key inscribed 'Key of the Back Stairs', see BMSat 6564. Between the heads of the canvassers is posted a bill, the lower part only being visible: And for the coarse, vulgar abuse which appear in certain manifestos, signed 'John Churchill, the Select Committee are only sorry to see the friends of the Court Candidates so very angry at this period of the Poll, as they will probably stand in need of some portion of temper at the close of it. With this caution they leave the Committee at Wood's at full liberty to rave about bribes and bludgeons, perjuries and butchers, lodgers and wounds, weavers and cleavers, and according to their own discretion to decorate their advertisement with all that election quackery suggests in desperate cases.
By order of the Committee
R. Morrell, Secretary.'
Probably an actual poster: R. Morrell signed the advertisements of a Select Committee at Irelands', Bow Street, on illegal votes.
Behind the Duchess on the extreme right are two slatternly ballad-singers who sing, "Charley Fox with a Plumper for me!", and "Fox with a Plumper for me!" Above their heads is the lower part of a placard inscribed:
'an unalterable friend to the rights of the People.
I am with every sentiment of gratitude and respect,
Your most obedient,
And most humble servt
C. J. Fox.
St James's St April 26
The Duchess wears a large favour in her hat inscribed 'Fox & Liberty'; one of the ballad-singers, whose breasts are uncovered, has a similar favour inscribed 'Fox'. 26 April 1784
- Production date
Height: 275 millimetres
Width: 358 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', VI, 1938)
For the allegations that Lord Mountmorres, a leading supporter of Hood and Wray, was a lodger without a vote, see BMSat 6492. John Churchill was the active chairman of the Election Committee of Hood and Wray who signed the party advertisements from Wood's Hotel. For some of the gibes alluded to in Morrell's notice see BMSat 6548, 6575, &c. For the scrutiny see BMSat 6553, &c. For Mrs. Hobart and the Duchess as rival canvassers see BMSat 6526, &c. For the state of the poll see Appendix I.
The drawing, incised for transfer to the plate, is in the Print Room (201* b. 2).
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number