A Birmingham toast as given on the 14th of July by the Revolution Society [art original].

[ca. 1791]
Physical Description:
1 drawing : pen and black ink with brown ink inscriptions on laid paper ; sheet 37.6 x 47.6 cm, mounted to 45 x 64 cm
Title inscribed in brown ink below image.
Date based on published Gillray print.
Description of published Gillray print in Catalogue of prints and drawings in the British Museum. Division I, political and personal satires / Mary Dorothy George, v. 6, no. 7894.
Description of published Gillray print in Works of James Gillray, the caricaturist with the history of his life and times / edited by Thomas Wright. London : Chatto and Windus, [1873?], p. 130.
Description of published Gillray print in Historical and descriptive account of the caricatures by James Gillray ... / by Thomas Wright, 1851, no. 58.
Purchased from the Old Print Shop, March 1961.
Lowercase letters [a,b,c,d,e...] inscribed near the heads of most figures corresponding to speech bubble dialogue inscribed below title in brown ink: [A] Damn my eyes! but I'll pledge you that toast to hell gapes for me ...
A 'counterprint' or transfer in brown ink from another print on verso: A Birmingham toast, as given on the 14th of July by the Revolution Society.
"Six men, seated and standing behind a table on which are decanters, punch-bowl, &c, drink a treasonous toast. This is given by Priestley (left) who stands in profile to the right, holding up an empty Communion dish and a brimming chalice, saying, "The------ [King's] Head, here!" Fox sits in the centre, raising his glass, his right hand on his heart; he looks up ecstatically, saying, "My Soul & Body, both, upon this Toast!!!" On his right. sits Sir Cecil Wray, saying, "O Heav'ns! why I would empty a Chelsea Pensioners small-beer barrel in such a cause!!" On the extreme left Sheridan bends forward, avidly filling his glass from a decanter of Sherry; he says, "Damn my Eyes! but I'll pledge you that Toast tho Hell gapes for me." On Fox's left sits Horne Tooke, saying, "I have not drank so glorious a Toast since I was Parson of Brentford, & kept it up with Balf & McQuirk!" (He had tried to secure the execution of these two 'bludgeon men' for murder at the Middlesex Election of 1768; though convicted they were pardoned,) He grasps a decanter of 'Holland[s]' (perhaps indicating attachment to Fox, after previous hostility. On the extreme right sits Dr. Lindsey, with (like Sheridan) a drink-blotched face; he drinks, saying, "Amen! Amen!" Before him are two decanters of 'Brandy'. Behind Horne Tooke and Lindsey stands a group of sanctimonious dissenters, with lank hair, much caricatured; three say respectively: "Hear our Prayers: & preserve us from Kings & Whores of Babylon!!!"; "Put enmity between us & the ungodly and bring down the Heads of all Tyrants & usurpers quickly good Lord - Hear us good Lord". and "O! grant the Wishes of thine inheritance""--British Museum catalogue.
Associated Names:
Gillray, James, 1756-1815 [Artist]
Constitutional Society (L
Fox, Charles James, 1749-1806
George III, King of Great Britain, 1738-1820
Lindsey, Theophilus, 1723-1808
Priestley, Joseph, 1733-1804
Sheridan, Richard Brinsley, 1751-1816
Tooke, John Horne, 1736-1812
Wray, Cecil, Sir, 1734-1805
Ink drawings -- British -- 18th century
Satires (Visual works) -- England -- 1791
Watermarks (Paper)
Content Type:
Prints & Photographs
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Call Number:
Drawings G41 no. 2 Box D300
Orbis Record:
Yale Collection:
Lewis Walpole Library
Digital Collection:
Lewis Walpole Library
Local Record Number:
A Birmingham Toast As Given on the 14th of July By the Revolution Society. The Lewis Walpole Library, Yale University.
Digital version