- Museum number
- Object: A meeting of creditors
The Prince of Wales stands silent and embarrassed, full-face, twirling his thumbs, surrounded by clamouring bawds and courtesans. An old bawd, wearing a calash hood (see BMSat 5434) and furred cloak, stands beside him (right), supporting herself on a stick. She holds out a long scroll headed Weston and inscribed 'Providing 100 . . A rarræ show 1000 . . . one from the country just imported 2000 . . breaking a reflecter 100 . . Myself 2000 . . an Entertainment 500 . . Sky Rocket 100'. She says: "what! I suppose you don't know me then aye - aye - you think to come Falstaf over us do you." On the left stands a younger woman wearing a feathered hat, a black patch replacing her nose: she leans towards him, saying: "what won't you come pound". She points to a long scroll headed 'Left standing 1000'; one of many items is 'my Nose 20'. On the extreme left in the foreground sits a black woman, truculently holding out her long account headed 'Black Joke 300' and signed 'Black Moll Hedge Lane'. A little birch-rod is attached to the waist of her loose striped gown. She says: "come Massa come & settle my count de affair you know has been long Standing". On the right, turning her head towards the Prince, is an old bawd, flamboyantly dressed, one gouty leg thrust forward and supported on a foot-stool. In her right hand is a jelly-glass; in her left her long account headed 'bill Annuities A first Slice of a nice tit bit only 12 years and 6 Hours - 1000. Ditto Warranted aetat 40 - 2000, . . .' [cf. BMSat 8485]. She says: "how he stares he seems to be struck Comical". Behind and on the extreme right is a little girl holding a paper: 'Maidenhead'. Behind the principal figures are others, young and pretty, or old and ugly.
The Prince is fat with a heavy double chin but is scarcely caricatured. He wears a large swathed neckcloth with ends, a short spencer (see BMSat 8192) over his coat, and the collar of his double-breasted spotted waistcoat over his spencer. 3 April 1795.
- Production date
Height: 258 millimetres
Width: 401 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', VII, 1942)
A satire on the Prince's debts, see BMSat 8673, &c, on his approaching marriage, see BMSat 8610, and ('inter alia') on his penchant for middle-aged women. Cf. BMSat 7873 (1791), &c.
For further discussion, see Temi Odumosu, "Africans in English Caricature 1769-1819: Black Jokes, White Humour" (Harvey Miller) 2017, chapter 2, “ ‘What a nice bit!’: The Comic ‘sable mistress’ and her Suitors”, pp. 99-135.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number