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James Gillray, 1756–1815

John Bull Bother'd; - or - The Geese Alarming the Capitol

Materials & Techniques:
Etching and aquatint, hand-colored
Sheet: 11 5/8 x 14 3/4in. (29.5 x 37.5cm)

Lettered above image, upper right: "Price 3 shills - The Engraving not having been Paid for, by the Associations for Vending two penny Scurrilities."; lettered inside immage, upper left: "'Aristocrat Pyes? Lord defend us! Waunds, Measter, you | frighten a poor honest simple Fellow out of his wits! Gin shops | & Printers Ears! & Bloody-Clubs & Lord Mayor's! and Wild- | -Irishmen without Breeches, & Sans-Culottes! Lord have mercy upon | our Wives & Daughter! And yet I'll be shot, if I can see any | thing myself, but a few Geese, gabbling together, but Lord help my silly head, how should such a Clod-pole as I, be able to see any | thing Right? I don't know what occasion for I to see at all for that | matter; why Measter does all that for I, my business is only to Fire | when & where Measter orders, & to pay for the Gunpowder, | but Measter o' mine (if I may speak a word,) where's the use of Firing | now? what can us two do against all them Hundreds of Thousands | of Millions of Monsters? Lord, Measter, had not we better try if they won't | shake hands with us, & be Friends? for if we | should go to fighting with | them, & They should La- | -ther Us, what will become | of You & I, then, Measter!!!'"; upper center: "'There, John! there! there they are! I see them | get your Arms ready, John! they're Rising & coming | upon us from all parts; there! theres Ten Thousand sans-Culottes now on their passage! & there! look on | the other side, the Scotch have caught the Itch too; and | the Wild Irish have begun to pull off their Breeches! what will become of us, John? & see, there's Five Hundred Disputing | - Clubs, with bloody Mouths; & enty Thousand Bill stickers | with Caira, pasted me on the front of their Red caps! where's the | Lord Mayor, John? are the Lions safe? down with the | Book stalls! blow up the Gin shops! cut off the Printers Ears! | O Lord, John! O Lord! we're all ruin'd! they'l[l] Murder us, and | make us into Aristoctat Pyes!'"; lettered below image, lower left: "JOHN BULL Bother'd; or The Geese Alarming the Capitol."; lower center: "'Thus on the Rock, heroic Manlius stood, | 'Spy'd out the Geese, & prov'd Rome's guardian God."; lower right: "Js. Gy. desn. et fect. pro bono publico. Pubd. Decr. 19th 1792. by H. Humphrey No.18. Old Bond Street."

Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
Prints and Drawings
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IIIF Manifest:

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