- Museum number
- Object: A trial for a rape!!!
A much burlesqued court scene, in which Pitt is tried by Fox for the rape of Erin. Fox (left) as judge sits on a platform and under a canopy surmounted by a trophy of bonnet-rouge, sword, palm branch with a scroll: 'Libertas'. Sheridan, his face much disfigured by drink, sits beside him with the rod of an usher. Pitt stands in a box, facing the judge, a paper inscribed 'Union' beside him. Burdett as gaoler (cf. BMSat 9341) stands beside him holding keys. Erin stands below Pitt at the end of a table round which sit members of the Opposition. She is a young girl dressed in white, with shamrock in her hair, her left arm resting on her harp; she declaims: "I appeal to the Court! notwithstanding his violence he declares he will dedicate his life to the accomplishment of his wicked purpose!!!" On her right sit Norfolk and Horne Tooke, both wearing bonnets-rouges. On the near side of the table, their heads turned in profile to the right, are Erskine, Nicholls, his glass held up, one eye closed, Derby, and Bedford. Next the last is a judge (? Thurlow) and at the corner of the table on Erin's left are M. A. Taylor, wearing a bonnet-rouge, and Tierney. Behind the heads of Norfolk and Horne Tooke are rows of massed spectators, and above them is a gallery, filled with fashionably-dressed women, holding muffs, who make remarks expressive of their condemnation of Pitt, satirizing the interest taken in rape trials. 8 February 1799
Hand-coloured etching and aquatint
- Production date
Height: 319 millimetres
Width: 461 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', VII, 1942)
For the Union see BMSat 9284, &c. Of those depicted only Sheridan and Tierney opposed the Union in the debates. Fox was at St. Ann's Hill. Burdett, Nicholls, and the others did not speak.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number