George Cruikshank

Prev | Next | Contents


" Wi' ghastly ee, poor tweedle-dee
Upon his hunkers bended,
An' pray'd for grace wi ruefu' face,
An' so the quarrel ended -- "

Hark how the tinker apostrophises the violinist, stating to the widow at the same time the advantages which she might expect from an alliance with himself: --

" Despise that shrimp, ihat withered imp, Wi' a* his noise and caperin;
And take a share with those that bear
The budget an' the apron!

And by that stowp, my faith an' houpe.

An by that dear Kilbaigie!
If e'er ye want, or meet wi' scant.

May I ne'er weet my craigie."

Cruikshank's caird is a noble creature; his face and figure show him to be fully capable of doing and saying all that is above written of him.

Illustration by George Cruikshank

In the second part, the old tale of ' The Three Hunchbacked Fiddlers ' is illustrated with equal felicity. The famous classical dinners and duel in * Peregrine Pickle ' are also excellent in their way; and the connoisseur of prints and etchings may see in the latter plate, and in another in this volume, how great the artist's mechanical skill is as an etcher. The distant view of the city in the duel, and of a market-place in ' The Quack Doctor,' are delightful specimens of the artist's skill in depicting buildings and back-grounds. They are touched with a grace, truth, and dexterity of workmanship that leave nothing to desire. We have before mentioned the man with the mouth which appears in this number, and should be glad to give a little vignette emblematical of gout and indigestion, in which the artist has shown all the fancy of Callot. Little demons, with long saws for noses, are making dreadful incisions into the toes of the unhappy sufferer; some are bringing pans of hot coals to keep the wounded member warm; a huge, solemn nightmare sits on the invalid's chest, staring solemnly into his eyes; a monster, with a pair of drumsticks, is banging a devil's tattoo on his forehead; and a pair of imps are nailing great tenpenny nails into his hands to make his happiness complete.

But, though not able to seize upon all we wish, we have been able to provide a tolerably large Cruikshank gallery for the reader's amusement, and must hasten to show off our wares.

Prev | Next | Contents