- Museum number
- Object: Low life above stairs; or, the Humours of the Great Baby at B***ht*n
Heading to an engraved broadside. A servants' ball in the Pavilion, the musicians in the gallery being Ministers (left to right): Sidmouth and Liverpool play a duet at a square piano, gaping at each other; Eldon blows bagpipes; Castlereagh plays a harp. George IV waltzes with a fat, plainly dressed cook; he says: "How poor a thing may do a noble office!" A black footman dances with a fat lady; another lady dances amorously with a fat footman. One courtier (Bloomfield) dances with and embraces a fat cook, another has a more elegant partner. In the foreground stands Lady Conyngham (left), distressed and alarmed, her husband's antlered profile is just behind her; both wear coronets. She says: "Ah! with his scullion! Titles & rank are my defence But what can save her insolence!" He says: "If he has turn'd up my Wife I indeed may say—[citing Wolsey] "Farewell a long farewel to all my greatness!"" The wall and gallery are patterned with Chinese figures. The verses begin: 'Releas'd from all the toils of State . . .' The 4th, 5th, 6th, and 10th of 12 verses:
'"I've supp'd within my kitchen range,
"But I'll descend no more;*
"The scene this night I'll wholly change,
"No virtuous women visit me—
"They dread to lose their name—
"I'll condescend—with those make free
"Who never blush'd with shame.
"Twas wrong when C—e eat perchance,
With Vassali and Bergami—
"I'll eat with Cooks, with Scullions dance—
"I can't do wrong [see No. 14133], G—d d—n me." . . .
And Cunning-one moved not a limb,
But stood amazed with wonder!
To see the K—g's disgraceful whim,
And, Vow'd she'd pull 'm asunder. . . .
* See Marks's Caricature of "He stoops to Conquer, or,
R—l George Sunk" [No. 13210]'
24 January 1821
- Production date
Height: 341 millimetres
Width: 347 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', X, 1952)
Apparently an imitation of No. 13785; cf. No. 13208. For George IV and Lady Conyngham, No. 13847; for Queen Caroline in the kitchen, No. 13821; for the 'Great Baby' cf. No. 13764, &c.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number