- Museum number
- Object: The unprotected child - dedicated to the nobility.
Lord Petersham, in profile to the right, kneels at the feet of a pretty girl seated on a sofa, clasping her round the waist; she pushes him away. An older woman, also, handsome, opens the door (right) to look in. The women are identified as Miss and Mrs. Bartolozzi. Petersham says: Adored Angel! condescend to listen to Peter's-sham plea and let us fly.— you know you have full permission. From his pocket projects a book: Don Juan. She turns away, saying, Away!—thou emaciated—effeminate Wretch—a disgrace to your sex, and cease to persecute an Unprotected Child. On the floor by Petersham are his wallet with a note for £500 peeping from it, and one of the sofa cushions. Mrs. Bartolozzi: I'll get the five hundred I warrant—if she don't consent I'll swear a robbery against her. On the extreme right is the corner of a square piano; on the music-stool lies the music of a song: The Mother The words by Thompson [sic] Set to Music by Mrs B—Delightful task to rear the tender thought and teach the young ideas ['The Seasons']. Over the sofa is a picture of Coll Charteris: an elderly man chucks under the chin a country girl who has just arrived in London in a wagon (right). After the title:
"How vain are all hereditary honours,
"Those poor possessions from anothers deeds,
"Unless our own just virtues form a title,
"And give a sanction to the fond assumption.
15 July 1822
- Production date
Height: 251 millimetres
Width: 356 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', X, 1952)
According to a note by E. Hawkins: 'Ld P— did not succeed, but Mrs Bartolozzi received and kept £500.' Josephine Bartolozzi (younger sister of Mme Vestris) was the daughter of Gaetano Bartolozzi (son of the engraver) and his wife Therese Janssen, who had supported her children by giving music lessons. Josephine is said to have run away when she found that her mother was on Petersham's side. She married Joseph Anderson in 1831. C. E. Pearce, Madame Vestris, 1913, pp. 28-9, 82. For Petersham as an effeminate dandy cf. No. 14283, &c.; for 'Stable Yard', No. 14280. Charteris (1675-1732) was the notorious profligate of his day, cf. No. 1840.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number