Burdett, Peel, O'Connell and Wellington in the roles of the body-snatchers Burke and Hare, suffocating John Bull with a rope; representing the extinguishing by Wellington and Peel of the constitution of 1688 by Catholic Emancipation. Coloured etching by A. Sharpshooter, 1829.
- Sharpshooter, A.
- [April 1829]
Selected images from this work
About this work
John Bull lies on the floor being suffocated by four politicians in favour of Catholic Emancipation: Sir Francis Burdett, Robert Peel, Daniel O'Connell and the Duke of Wellington. In the background, behind a dissecting table, stand four anatomists represented by the Catholic kings of Spain (left) and France, the Pope and the devil: the devil whispers in the Pope's ear. Far left, the King (George IV) is gagged by Lady Conyngham, a confidante of the King's reputed to be in favour of Catholic Emancipation. Right, Britannia is gagged with a plaster and is restrained at the elbows; she sits on the British lion which is also muzzled with a plaster. Suffocation with a pitch plaster was reputed to be one of the methods of murder used by bodysnatchers (see the caricature "Present mode of applying a pitch plaister!!" by Dickey Fubs, Wellcome Library catalogue no. 663319i)
- John Bull (Symbolic character)
- Britannia (Symbolic character)
- Body snatching
- Plaster (Pharmacy)
- Catholic emancipation
- Human beings |Constitution
- Costume |Great Britain –19th century
- Great Britain
- Burdett, Francis, 1770-1844.
- Peel, Robert, 1788-1850.
- O'Connell, Daniel, 1775-1847.
- Wellington, Arthur Wellesley, Duke of, 1769-1852.
- George IV, King of Great Britain, 1762-1830.
- Conyngham, Elizabeth Conyngham, Marchioness, -1861.
- Burke, William, 1792-1829.
- Hare, William, 1792?-1870?