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- Object: Lork what a long tail our cat has got
Above the design as an alternative title: 'Tommy Grey with the tail of his Order!!!' A lean grey cat (right) with the head of Grey, in profile to the right, walks along the top of a wall with a fish in its mouth inscribed 'First Lord of the Treasury 6000'. Its vast tail takes a sweeping curve round the design, and is cut off by the lower margin on the extreme right, beside the inscription: 'The end of the Tail not yet Seen'. The tail is brindled with white patches on each of which is an inscription: 'My son Howick under Secretary of State—2,000'; 'Charley Grey 60th Foot 500'; 'Fred Grey Navy 500 My Son in Law the Coal heaver [Durham] 2,193—6—2'; 'My Son, in Law Georgey Barrington Lord of the Admiralty 1,200'; 'My Son in Law E. Saurin Capt in the Navey [sic] Commissioner of Stamps 1.200'; 'My Brothe [sic] Henry General—& Col of 13 Dragoons 1,200'; 'My Brother Ned the Parson 5,000' [see BM Satires No. 16534]; 'Neddy Ellice My Brother in Law, Secy to the Treasury 3,500'; 'Ld Ponsonby My Brother in Law Envoy to the Belgian Govt 6,000'; Bill [i.e. Richard] Ponsonby My brother in Law, a Bishop 6,000'; 'Geo Ponsonby My brother in Law—Ld of the Treasury—1,600'; 'My Cousin Duncannon Woods & Forests 3,000'; 'My Cousin the Governor of Malta [Maj.-Gen. Sir F. C. Ponsonby, appointed 1826] 7,000'; 'My Cousin Secy of State 6,000 [Melbourne]'; 'My Cousin Lamb a Sort of Ambassador—12,000'; 'my other Cousin Lamb—a Sort of Secy of State—2,000'.
On the wall are two bills: 'Commit No Nuisance' and 'Reform in Parliament— Meeting will be comm . . .' A caricature of Wellington (right) in profile to the left, holding up his sabre, is scrawled on the wall. Feb 15 1831
- Production date
Height: 257 millimetres
Width: 362 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', XI, 1954)
An attack on Grey for his admitted nepotism (a common subject of comment)(1) and also for "tax-eating", since some of the appointments mentioned were not made by him, and his two sons in the Army and Navy are included. A relationship with the Lamb family is developed from the marriage of his wife's cousin Lady Caroline to Lord Melbourne. Frederick Lamb was Ambassador in Vienna 1831-41, George Lamb was Under Secretary, Home Department. Edward Saurin was not Grey's son-in-law. Richard Ponsonby was translated from Killaloe to Deny in 1831, see No. 16760. Bishops were especial objects of hatred, cf. No. 16805, &c. For Grey and his Order see No. 16373, &c; cf. No. 16544, &c. See also Nos. 16534, 1655°. 16577, 16650, 16709, 16836, 16986, 17276, 17327.
Grey is a plump cat with a long tail, symbolizing his relatives and beneficiaries in HB.'s No. 277, 24 July 1833; he says "Hurrah! for the Queue de Chat!"
(1) In the Ballot, 2 Jan. 1830 (the opening number), Grey's nepotism is given as ground for the suspicions felt of the intentions of the Ministry: "We venture to state it was scarcely possible for Lord Grey, or any nobleman, to have quartered his family more effectually on the people of this country." Cf. Praed, "Intentions . . . The Premier has been kind, I own, | To most of his connections . . ." 'Pol. Poems', ed. Sir G. Young, 1888, p. 146; see also ibid. pp. 167, 257.
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