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Mesmerism, Rabbit vs. Stoat by H. M. Bateman

Mesmerism, Rabbit vs. Stoat by H. M. Bateman


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Mesmerism, Rabbit vs. Stoat by H. M. Bateman

Cartoon by H. M. Bateman who frequently lampooned the tax man in his work. Here, a meek looking man looks rather like a rabbit, trembling under the intense, suspicious stare of the stoat-like tax inspector. A number of lethal looking weapons are fastened to the front of the inspectors desk. Date: 1926

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Media ID 23274288

© Estate of H M Bateman/ILN/Mary Evans Picture Library

Bateman Inland Inspector Interview Mesmerism Oct19 Rabbit Revenue Satire Stoat 1926 Taxman


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> Animals > Mammals > Mustelidae > Stoat

> Arts > Pop art > Satire > Humorous artworks

> Humour > Cartoon

> Humour > H.M. Bateman

> Humour > Postcard

> Humour > Related Images

> Mary Evans Prints Online > New Images August 2021


EDITORS COMMENTS
In the quirky and satirical world of H.M. Bateman, the lines between animals and humans often blur, and nowhere is this more evident than in his iconic cartoon "Mesmerism, Rabbit vs. Stoat," created in 1926. In this intriguing scene, a meek and hapless rabbit-like man sits before a stoat-like tax inspector, his eyes wide with fear as the inspector's intense, suspicious stare bore into him. The inspector, with his sharp features and menacing demeanor, resembles nothing so much as a deadly predator, his desk adorned with an array of lethal-looking weapons. The caption "Mesmerism" suggests that the inspector may be using some form of hypnotic manipulation to extract information from the hapless rabbit. Bateman's cartoons were known for their biting wit and social commentary, and this particular work offers a humorous take on the often-feared encounter between the taxman and the taxpayer. The Inland Revenue and HMRC may not have been popular institutions in 1920s Britain, and Bateman's satirical portrayal of the tax inspector as a stoat, a predator known for its ferocity and cunning, would have struck a chord with many. The cartoon's enduring popularity is a testament to Bateman's ability to capture the absurdities and anxieties of everyday life in a way that continues to resonate with audiences today.

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