Three old hags surround a basket of new-born babies with bats in the distance. Etching by F. Goya, 1796/98.

  • Goya, Francisco, 1746-1828.
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About this work


It has been suggested that this image makes use of the word 'chupar' in meaning 'to suck' or 'to swindle', this is strengthened by the reference to the costume in the form of habits of witches, monks or nuns disguised as witches



Physical description

1 print : etching with aquatint ; platemark 21 x 15.3 cm


Mucho hay que chupar. English translation of lettering: "There is a lot to taste" Bears number: 45


"Los Caprichos" are a set of eighty etchings/aquatints made by Francisco Goya y Lucientes between the years 1796-98. They were first published and advertised for sale in Madrid papers in 1799. Very few copies were purchased and in 1803, having sold only twenty-seven copies, Goya offered the copperplates together with 240 unsold sets to Charles IV in exchange for a pension for his son, Javier. The next edition was published in the mid-nineteenth century and the last edition was made in Madrid in 1937, during the Spanish Civil War. Goya made these prints after a serious illness that rendered him deaf. The prints are of satirical nature, part fantasy being full of witches, monsters, grotesques, prostitutes and part men part beast figures. They were in part a series of caricatures which satirise the vices and follies of Spanish society, illustrated by witches sporting monk's habits. The words of the inscriptions themselves imply double meanings, which reinforce the satire


Wellcome Collection 36754i



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