- Museum number
- Object: Nightly visitors, at St Ann's Hill;-
Ghosts (right) stand in a row at the foot of Fox's bed; he sits up, staring in terror, hands raised, large tears on his cheeks. The ghosts emerge from clouds; they are headless, with bloodstained necks round which are nooses, except for Lord Edward Fitzgerald, who stands above the others, in profile to the left, with blood-stained hair and shirt. His right hand is on his breast and he says:
"" Who first sedue'd my youthful Mind from Virtue? -
"Who plann'd my Treasons, & who caus'd my Death? -
"Remember poor Lord Edward, and despair!!! - "
""Why do'st thou shake thy, Goary Locks at me?
"Dear, bravest, worthiest, noblest, best of Men!
"Thou can'st not say, I did it! - "
The body on Lord Edward's right and on the extreme right is that of Grogan, a leader of rebels in Wexford, it was said under compulsion, hanged from Wexford Bridge, his head fixed on a pike. Lecky, 'Hist. of England', 1890, viii. 95, 166-7. On Lord Edward's left is a body, the label from the neck inscribed 'Remember Hervay'. (Bagenal Harvey, commander-in-chief in Wexford (ibid. viii. 91), executed with Grogan.) Next is 'Quigley' (or O'Coigley), see BMSat 9189, executed 7 June 1798 at Maidstone. Next, a label, 'Shears's', rises from clouds in which the bodies are concealed. (John and Henry Sheares, elected to the Directory in Dublin on the arrest of Bond and others, were arrested 21 May and executed on 14 July 1798.
Lord Edward died of the wounds received when he resisted arrest, see 'Auckland Corr.' iv. 414 ff., 442-4.)
Above Fox's head fly two naked creatures with infantine bodies, webbed wings, and the serpents of faction or discord springing from their heads and writhing round their bodies. They hold up between them a paper inscribed 'Confessions \ of O'Conner \ Ol Bond'. The bed is framed in heavy curtains. Mrs. Fox lies asleep with her back to Fox. On the ground at his side is an open book partly hidden by the bed-draperies: ' . . . Head Quarters London. Plan of the Irish Rebellion.' 21 September 1798
Hand-coloured etching and aquatint
- Production date
Height: 363 millimetres
Width: 260 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', VII, 1942)
For Fox and Lord Edward see BMSat 9227. Fox attacked the Government's Irish policy, see BMSat 9242, and had given evidence in favour of O'Connor, see BMSat 9245, &c. Oliver Bond was sentenced to death, July 1798, but his life was saved by his (forty-five) fellow prisoners, who offered to give full information and consent to voluntary exile if their lives were spared; 'Auckland Corr.' iv. 37-9. Bond died in prison in Sept. 1798. O'Connor, Emmet, and McNevin gave evidence on the Irish conspiracy to secret committees of the Irish House of Commons and House of Lords, reported to the former, 21 Aug. 1798, see BMSat 9245. The French landed at Killala Bay on 22 Aug.; on 27 Aug. the three published an advertisement in the papers invalidating the report, which on 6 Sept., with some qualifications, they retracted. 'Lond. Chron.', 27 Aug., 3, 4, and 12 Sept. For the Rebellion see BMSat 9228, &c. For St. Ann's Hill (with its implication of secession from Parliament, see BMSat 9018, &c), cf. BMSat 9217. Cf. also BMSat 9371. For Fox as Macbeth, cf. BMSat 8705.
Grego, 'Gillray', pp. 243-4. Wright and Evans, No. 207. Reprinted, 'G.W.G.', 1830.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1998 Apr-Aug, Belfast, Ulster Museum, 'Up in Arms'
2001 Jun-Sep, London, Tate Britain, 'Gillray and the Art of Caricature'
2006 Feb-May, London, Tate Britain, 'Gothic Nightmares:...'
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number