The Age of George III
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This cartoon was sent to me by Bill Webber. My thanks to him. Thanks also to Yong Mun Hin for help in formatting the image
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This cartoon by Isaac Cruikshank was published on 12 April 1805 by SW Fores. of 50 Piccadilly, London. In 1805-6 Lord Melville, then first lord of the Admiralty, was accused of negligence and embezzlement in the management of the Navy and impeached. He obtained a deserved acquittal. Still, some of the most respected members of the House of Commons, among others Wilberforce, voted for the impeachment. They must have held, not without good reason, that one of England's leading statesmen, who was a man specially trusted by Pitt, had, by his conduct when holding high office, laid himself open to grave suspicion of high crimes and misdemeanours which, if proved, would have covered him with disgrace.
In it, two elderly Scots discuss the Melville case. One, whilst taking snuff from an elaborate horn snuffbox, says, “Touch the Sillar!!! – Tis a disgrace on aw Scotland!”
Melville on the left is seen weeping saying, “What my ain Countrymen turn their backs on me! then tis up with Johny Mac-cree”.
On the right, Pitt runs off furtively saying, “I must cut out this connexion - & leave him to his fate”.
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Last modified 12 January, 2016
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