elegance of history blog: History geek, avid reader and art lover. Here you will find random bits of history, book reviews and musings on art, literature, manners, life, music and anything else that interests me.
Before her marriage to Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, Princess Charlotte of Wales, the heiress to the British throne was betrothed to Prince William, the Hereditary Prince Of Orange. That was an union the Princess, much to her father’s chagrin, had never been too keen on. Both her mother’s hatred for the Orange family, and her
There was no love lost between the English and Napoleon. In the years between the Corsican’s rise to power and his exile at St Helena, the English mercilessly made fun of him in lots of satirical prints. Here are a few: A POLITICAL FAIR A crowded fair-ground, full of spectators, attractions, performers, placards, and flags.
To say that King George IV and his consort, Caroline of Brunswick had never got on well would be an understatement. The two separated soon after their wedding, but never stopped trying to make life hell for each other. George, in particular, was keen on getting rid of his wife and tried several times to
In 1736, Hogarth created a satirical print in which he ridiculed the university of Oxford. Its students were accused to be ignorant and lazy, more interested in having fun that studying. Doesn’t sound much different from today, does it? Here’s how John Trusler, in his The Works of William Hogarth, describes this satirical print: “No
In 1848, revolutions broke out all over Europe, and even in some parts of Latin America. Over 50 countries were affected. But everything remained quiet in Great Britain. A cartoon published in an edition of Punch, and titled “John Bull Showing The Foreign Powers How To Make A Constitutional Plum-Pudding,” explains why. The picture shows
William Hogarth originally engraved “The Battle of the Pictures” as a bidder’s ticket for an auction of his paintings, which included sets such as A Harlot’s Progress, A Rake’s Progress and The Four Times of the Day. But the work also represents a scathing commentary on the action houses of his time, and the unethical
Consequences was a very popular game in the Georgian and Regency eras. Players are required to fill in the blanks of a story, then fold the paper over and pass it to the next player, who’ll have to continue it without knowing what has just been written. Anything you could happen in these stories, and
Victims of the steep staircase reveal all, says the heading of this satirical print. The steep staircase was located at Somerset House (now the Courtland Institute of Art) in Pall Mall, where members of the Royal Academy exhibited their paintings. Designed in 1776 by Sir William Chambers, who had been commissioned to create a new
Hogarth was an avowed patriot who was concerned about the spread of foreign fashions in England. In his print, The Bad Taste Of the Town, also known as Masquerades And Operas, he attacked the Italian operas and singers that were displacing classic English theater and the masquerade dances thrown by the Swiss impresario Heidegger, which
In 1819, England was facing an economic crisis. The conditions of the country were summed up in a double print, “John Bull In Clover” & “John Bull Done Over”, published by Fores on 9th January. In the first print, a fat John Bull is having a great time. He’s smoking a pipe and drinking a