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Thomas Rowlandson (1757-1827)

The Prospect Before Us. 20 Dec 1788

Hand-coloured etching | 26.2 x 37.1 cm (sheet of paper) | RCIN 810294

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One of the satirical prints commissioned by the Prince of Wales to support his bid to be regent, this plays on fears over the influence of William Pitt and Queen Charlotte. The Queen is shown being led by her German dresser, Mrs Schwellenberg, who holds the Lord Chancellor’s purse and mace, while Pitt follows meekly behind. The Queen and Mrs Schwellenberg were widely distrusted as foreign influences on the crown. Rowlandson issued this print under a pseudonym (‘Tom Brown’) to disguise his authorship. Probably acquired during the reign of Queen Victoria Cat. 21