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A Sea of Justice? 20 legal caricatures. Vanity Fair.

A Sea of Justice? 20 legal caricatures. Vanity Fair.

by Vanity Fair

Gathering of wigs. Vanity Fair 'Spy' Leslie Ward caricature.

In 1868 Thomas Gibson Bowles (1842-1922) founded Vanity Fair magazine with eight to ten pages each issue. Writing most of the regular editorial under various pseudonyms, Bowles's indiscriminate provocative and disarmingly fearless attitude gained a wide audience - and was beneficial to him during his later political career. Vanity Fair became immensely popular from 1869 on, after inclusion each week of one amusing lithographed caricature, parodying any newsworthy personage. It became a point of pride to be the victim of one of the magazine's caricaturists.

Written under his nickname of 'Jehu Junior' (after the biblical prophet who effected the downfall of his enemies), Bowles accompanied each caricature with witty text on each individual, and considered the caricatures to be “grim faces made more grim, grotesque figures made more grotesque, and dull people made duller by the genius of our talented collaborator ‘Ape'’" (Carlo Pellegrini, 1839-1889), who was the first Vanity Fair artist. (In 1864 Pellegrini came to London from Naples where he had been popular among Neapolitan society and had repaid their favour with good-natured caricatures.) The other major Vanity Fair caricaturist was ‘Spy’ (Leslie Ward, 1851-1922). Between 1869 to 1914 over 2,300 different lithographic caricatures by twenty-four artists were printed for Vanity Fair by the prominent lithographer, Vincent Brooks (1814-1885). Nearly all the caricatures were of men, and the majority were political figures, but the most popular have always been of sportsmen and the legal fraternity in their wigs.

Page size 330 x 225mm (12 7/8 x 8 7/8 inches). Image size 280 x 200mm (11 x 7 7/8 inches).

Stock Number: dalegal10Price: $40.00