An engraving after one of England’s foremost 19th century illustrators. Here, Cruikshank pokes fun at the lack of sophistication of his fellow Englishmen. Two English tourists greet each others outside the archway of the Hotel des Fermes, a rotund man wearing a rather absurd traveling hat, and a young dandy. Their conversation in fractured French is printed in the caption below: “Commong porty vous Munseer?” and “O Oui–il est un tres belle jour!” They are observed with amusement by a French coachman and another man, as well by two young women looking out the window of a milliner’s shop. The outer wall of the hotel is placarded with advertisements for theatrical entertainments poking fun at the English, e.g. one for a comic opera called “John Bull in Paris” (John Bull being the symbolic embodiment of the typical Englishman).
The print was originally issued in 1822. This is a reissue from an 1835 series called Cruikshankiana.
George Cruikshank was from a family of caricaturists, illustrators and engravers that included his father, Issac, and his brother Robert. At an early age he showed talent for drawing and engraving. He was influenced by the satirical art of William Hogarth and went on to produce over 15,000 drawings during his long life. In the early 1820s he made political caricatures, but gradually concentrated more on book illustration. His best known works were for the books of Charles Dickens, including Oliver Twist. Among his large number of other illustrated books were a Grimm’s Fairy Tales (1827), a Pilgrim’s Progress and Paradise Lost, and Life in London (1821).
Condition: Generally very good noting overall all toning of paper, and the usual light wear, soiling, soft creases. Trimmed to the plate mark on the top and bottom. Remnants of card board on the verso top and bottom.
George’s Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires: 14441.
“George Cruikshank.” http://www.speel.demon.co.uk/artists2/cruik.htm