Monstrous craws, at a new coalition feast
Cartoon shows King George, dressed as an old woman, the Queen, and the Prince of Wales seated around a basin perched on the laps of the King and Queen; they eagerly spoon the contents, representing gold coins, into their mouths. Pouches hanging from their necks like goitres are full, except for that of the Prince of Wales, whose is empty. The gate to the treasury, in the background, is open.
Caption label from exhibit "Monstrous Craws...": James Gillray (1757-1815) was among the most popular, prolific, revered, and reviled print satirists of the golden age of English caricature, the late eighteenth century. He took special delight in attacking the excesses of the royal family. Here, he caustically depicts King George III, Queen Charlotte, and the Prince of Wales (later George IV) gorging themselves on the national treasury, labelled "John Bull's Blood." The title, "Monstrous Craws," refers to the rapidly expanding gullets dangling from the royal necks, probably inspired by the recent public display in London of three "wild-born human beings," who apparently exhibited such features. The Library acquired this print with almost 10,000 other English satires from the Royal Library at Windsor Castle in 1921.
Forms part of : British Cartoon Prints Collection (Library of Congress).
Catalogue of prints and drawings in the British Museum. Division I, political and personal satires, v. 6, no. 7166
Exhibited: "Monstrous Craws and Character Flaws: Masterpieces of Cartoon Caricature," Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., February 25-July 1998.