Treasure's description

New morality

New morality

‘O! nurse of crimes and fashions! which in vain Our colder servile spirits would attain, How do we ape thee France!’ In this nightmare vision of Britain in thrall to the ideology of revolutionary France, the astonishing fecundity of Gillray’s artistry is married to the withering satire of Canning’s poetry. Note the corseted, weeping crocodile, a manifestation of the stay-maker and ideologue, Thomas Paine, who died on June 8, 1809. The great monster represents the Duke of Bedford and is bestridden by a filthy Thelwall, swarthy Fox, and Tiernay and Nicholls. The engraving was published in 1798 to accompany Canning’s verse in ‘The anti-Jacobin’. A comprehensive analysis of the imagery by Dorothy George is to be found in volume seven of the ‘Catalogue of political and personal satires, preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum’.