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Print made by James Gillray, 1757–1815, British

Shakespeare Sacrificed; or, The Offering to Avarice

Etching with coloring on medium, slightly textured, cream wove paper
Sheet: 19 3/4 x 15 1/8 inches (50.2 x 38.4 cm), Plate: 19 3/4 x 15 1/8 inches (50.2 x 38.4 cm), and Image: 18 5/8 x 14 7/8 inches (47.3 x 37.8 cm)

Lettered upper right within image: "Immor- | -tality."; center left within image: "[?Mecoenas]_Leo_Alexander_Psha !"; center right within image: "List of | SUBSCRIBERS | to the | SACRIFICE."; lower center within image: "The cloud-capt | The gorgeous | The solemn Temples | Yea the great Globe | Shall dissolve | And like the baseless | fabrick of a vision, | Leave not a wreck behind"; lower right within image: "MODERN-MASTERS"; lower center within image: "King Lear. | Richard III. | Henry VI. | Macbeth | Hamlet | Romeo & Juliet | Midsummer Nights dream"; lower center within image: "OY [...] EI [...] - AMOY [...] O [...] - EI [...] I T [Omega] ."; lower right within image: "ANCIENT - MASTERS"; lower left: "James Gillray, design et fecit."; lower right: "Pub.d June 20.th 1789. by H. Humphrey No. 18. Old Bond Street."; lower center: "SHAKESPEARE - SACRIFICED ; _ or _ The Offering to AVARICE." | Soon as possible will be published, price One Guinea, N.1. of SHAKESPEARE ILLUSTRATED, with the Text, annotations, &c. complete; the Engravings to be carried on, in imitation of the Aldermans liberal plan_further particulars will shortly be given in all the Public papers_ _ _"

Signed in graphite, lower right: "[?JG]"

Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
Prints and Drawings
Subject Terms:
A Midsummer Night's Dream, play by William Shakespeare | altar | avarice | babies | bellows | book | boys | brushes | bubble | buckle | burin | buttons | caricature | children | chimneys | cloak | columns | devil | dome | engraver (printmaker) | fire | fur | grave | grave digger | Hamlet, play by William Shakespeare | hell | Henry VI, part I by William Shakespeare | Henry VI, part II by William Shakespeare | horn | immortality | King Lear, play by William Shakespeare | literary theme | Macbeth, play by William Shakespeare | moneybags | mother | offering | palette | plays | portfolios | printseller | Royal Academy of Arts | sacrifice | satire | shirts | shoes | shovel | skeleton | smoke | snail | socks | spirits | statue | stockings | The Tempest, play by William Shakespeare | trousers | vanity | wig | wings
Associated Places:
City of Westminster | England | London | Somerset House | United Kingdom | Westminster Abbey
Associated People:
Cordelia (character in King Lear)
Shakespeare, William (1564–1616), playwright and poet
Henry VI (1421–1471), king of England and lord of Ireland, and duke of Aquitaine
The Three Witches (characters in Macbeth)
Richard III (1452–1485), king of England and lord of Ireland
Bottom (character in A Midsummer Night's Dream)
Northcote, James (1746–1831), artist and author
Fuseli, Henry [formerly Johann Heinrich Füssli] (1741–1825), painter and writer
Beaufort, Henry [called the Cardinal of England] (1375?–1447), bishop of Winchester and cardinal
Boydell, John (1720–1804), engraver and printseller
King Lear (character in King Lear)
Fool (character in King Lear)
Puck (character in A Midsummer Night's Dream)
Richard (character in Shakespeare's Richard III)
Reynolds, Sir Joshua (1723–1792), portrait and history painter and art theorist
Royal Academy
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IIIF Manifest:

British Comic Art 1730 - 1830 (Museum of Art and Archaelogy, University of Missouri-Columbia, 1988-10-14 - 1988-12-04) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition]

Shakespeare and British Art (Yale Center for British Art, 1981-04-23 - 1981-07-05) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition]

Painters and Engraving - The Reproductive Print from Hogarth to Wilkie (Yale Center for British Art, 1980-03-26 - 1980-06-22) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition]

Rosie Dias, Exhibiting Englishness, John Boydell's Shakespeare Gallery and the formation of a national aesthetic , Yale University Press, New Haven, 2013, pp. vi., 100, 101, fig. 34, N72.N38 D53 2013 (YCBA) [YCBA]

Katherine McPherson, Art & Celebrity : In the Age of Reynolds & Siddons, University Park, Pennsylvania, 2017, pp. 52-53, 143, 148-49, 152-53, fig. 23, NJ18 R36 M37 2017 (YCBA) [YCBA]

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