A young man in slippers and dressing gown clasps the hand of his fashionably dressed friend, and according to the caption below, tells him, “I am glad to see you my Dear Tom, but you must excuse me asking you in this Morning-I’ve a particular Quiz with me: an Old Colonel & he hates Strangers.” Across a narrow passage, through a doorway, can be glimpsed a young woman reflected in a mirror. Although the visitor cannot see that, he evidently has figured out the true situation, slyly pointing to the ladies’ pattens in the doorway and replying, “O’ very well my Boy I’ll excuse you: I suppose he was here last Night; I see his Boots.”
This print pokes fun at a member of the Masonic order, Knights Templar, a group which pays homage to knightly and Christian virtues. His friend is evidently amused at having discovered that this young man has not held to those lofty standards of conduct, at least where relations with women are concerned.
Robert Laurie (1755-1836) and James Whittle (1757-1818) were London map, chart and printsellers active from 1794 to 1812 trading variously as Laurie and Whittle or Whittle and Laurie. Laurie began his career as a fine mezzotint engraver and exhibited at the Society of Artists from 1770 to 1776. With Whittle, they took over the large map and print business of Robert Sayer. Laurie & Whittle published many atlases and maps and products used for jigsaw puzzles. Robert’s son, Richard Holmes Laurie, succeeded him upon his retirement in 1812, and after Whittle’s death in 1818 carried on the business alone until at least 1840. The firm still exists as Imray, Laurie, Norie and Wilson Ltd., which has long specialized in marine charts.
Condition: Generally very good with the usual light toning, soiling, soft creases, wear. Various small marginal short tears and losses, easily matted over.
George’s Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires #10216.