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Hogarth / Election / B / W / (2)

Hogarth  /  Election  /  B  /  W  /  (2)


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Hogarth / Election / B / W / (2)

2. THE ELECTION Canvassing for votes

Mary Evans Picture Library makes available wonderful images created for people to enjoy over the centuries

Media ID 4306249

© Mary Evans Picture Library 2015 - https://copyrighthub.org/s0/hub1/creation/maryevans/MaryEvansPictureID/10004373

1757 Balcony Canvassing Election Elections Hogarth Votes


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EDITORS COMMENTS
This striking print by the renowned British artist William Hogarth captures the intense and chaotic scene of an election campaign in 18th century Britain. Titled "The Election: B," this image is the second in a series of six prints that Hogarth created in 1757 to depict the corrupt and manipulative nature of the political process during that time. In this particular print, we see a bustling street scene filled with candidates and their supporters canvassing for votes from the balcony of a grand house. The election, a hotly contested affair, is taking place below on the street, with voters lining up to cast their ballots. The atmosphere is tense and fraught with tension, as political allegiances are openly displayed and tempers begin to flare. On the balcony, a candidate, dressed in fine clothing and surrounded by his supporters, makes a passionate appeal to the voters below. He gestures wildly, trying to sway their opinions with promises and threats. Meanwhile, his opponents, also present on the balcony, engage in heated arguments and even physical altercations with each other and their supporters. The chaos and disorder of the scene is further amplified by the presence of bribers, who offer money and other inducements to voters in exchange for their support. The election official, a portly man in a red coat, looks on with a mixture of resignation and amusement, seemingly powerless to stop the corruption and manipulation that is taking place. This powerful and evocative print offers a fascinating glimpse into the political process of 18th century Britain, revealing the underhanded tactics and corrupt practices that were commonplace at the time. It is a testament to Hogarth's skill as a social commentator and his ability to capture the essence of a historical moment in time.

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