Early 19th century etching caricature titled ‘Uncorking Old Sherry’ of William Pitt, by James Gillray published by H. Humphrey, 1805. Presented in a fine 18th century frame with its original glass.

A layered commentary caricature depicting William Pitt, statesman and later British prime minister of 1783-1801. Pitt stands before the House of Commons, facing bottles containing heads of his most well-known opposition leaders. They include Fox, Tierney, Windham and Grey, and at Pitt’s feet lays a bottle containing the head of Sidmouth. Pitt is uncorking a bottle containing the head of Sheridan, which spray out and contain inscriptions describing excessive oratory, apparently by the opposition.

The caption reads: the honble Gent. tho' he does not very often address the House, yet when he does, he always thinks proper to pay off all arrears, & like a Bottle just uncorked bursts all at one into an explosion of Froth & Air;—then, whatever might for a length of time lie lurking & corked up in his mind. whatever he thinks of himself or hears in conservation, — whatever he takes many days or weeks to sleep upon, the whole common place book of the interval is sure to burst out at once, stored with studied-Jokes, sarcasms, arguments, invectives, & everything else, which his mind or memory are capable of embracing whether they have any relation or not to the Subject under discussion - See Mr Ptts speech on y Gent Defence Bill. March 6th 1805.


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Framed: 16 in x 12 in / 41 cm x 31 cm. Sheet: 13.5in x 9.5 in / 35 cm x 24 cm.

Price: £1450