The Gordon-knot, or, The bonny-duchess hunting the Bedfordshire bull [graphic] / Js. Gy. invt. & fect.

Gillray, James, 1756-1815, printmaker.
Physical Description:
1 print : etching on wove paper, hand-colored ; plate mark 26.0 x 36.4 cm, on sheet 28 x 40 cm
Title etched below image.
Temporary local subject terms: Match-making -- Matrimony -- Allusion to the Duke of Manchester -- Allusion to Col. Lennox -- Allusion to Viscount Brome -- Dogs: King Charles's spaniel -- Bulls -- Brooms -- Duchess of Manchester -- Viscountess Brome.
"The Duchess of Gordon runs in profile to the left, pursuing a bull which gallops away, out of reach. She holds out a ribbon inscribed 'Matrimony', tied in a bow, in which she wishes to noose the bull. She is stout, florid, and handsome, with tartan draperies hanging from her hair and looped about her dress. A slim daughter (Lady Georgiana) runs beside and behind her, saying, "Run, Mither! - run! run! O how I long to lead the sweet bonny Creature in a string! run! Mither! run. run." The Duchess cries: "De'el hurst your weam, ye overgrown Fool, what are ye kicking at? - are we not ganging to lead ye to Graze on the banks o' the Tweed, & to make ye free o' the Mountains o the North? - Stop! - stop! ye silly Loon ye! stop!, stop, stop." The scene is a bare and slightly mountainous moor. In the middle distance three other daughters of the Duchess dance hand in hand: one is in back view, half of her petticoats removed to show breeches, inscribed 'Manchester Velvet', indicating that she is Susan, who married the Duke of Manchester in 1793, and that she dominates her husband (cf. BMSat 8983). One (right) has a broom thrust through her sash to indicate that she is Louisa, m. Viscount Brome, 17 Apr. 1797. Beside the third (left) dances a spaniel attached to her waist by a ribbon inscribed 'K. Charles Breed', showing that she is Charlotte, who married Col. Lennox, see BMSat 7594 (afterwards Duke of Richmond). The Duchess was renowned for her match-making, in acquiring three dukes and a marquis for four of her five ill-dowered daughters. See Wraxall, 'Memoirs', 1884, iii. 391 ff.; 'Corr. of Lord G. Leveson Gower', 1917, i. 68, 73, 76. The pursuit of the Duke of Bedford was not at first successful, but Lady Georgiana was believed to have been engaged to him shortly before his death in 1803 (ibid. i. 336-7), after which she married, as his second wife, his brother and heir, the 6th Duke."--British Museum online catalogue.
Variant Titles:
Bonny duchess hunting the Bedfordshire bull
Auchincloss, Hugh Dudley--Ownership.
Bedford, Georgina Gordon,--Duchess of,--1781-1853--Caricatures and cartoons.
Gordon, Jane Gordon,--Duchess of,--1748-1812--Caricatures and cartoons.
Harvey, Francis--Ownership.
Humphrey, Hannah, active 1774-1817, publisher.
Richmond and Lennox, Charlotte Gordon,--Duchess of,--1768-1842--Caricatures and cartoons.
Riviere & Son Binding.
Satires (Visual works)--England--1797.
These images are provided for study purposes only. For publication or other use of images from the Library's collection, please contact the Lewis Walpole Library at Further details on the Library's photoduplication policy are available at
Call Number:
Auchincloss Gillray v. 9
Orbis Record:
Yale Collection:
Lewis Walpole Library
Digital Collection:
Lewis Walpole Library
Local Record Number:
Catalogue of prints and drawings in the British Museum. Division I, political and personal satires, v. 7, no. 9084
Wright, T. Works of James Gillray, the caricaturist with the history of his life and times, p. 230
Wright, T. Historical and descriptive account of the caricatures by James Gillray, no. 440