symbolization, the principal political passages of both the former countries, from the Restoration (1660) to the South Sea Bubble (1720). The most distinguished of the Dutch artists was Romain de Hooghe (1638–1720), a follower of Callot, who, without any of the weird power of his master, possessed a certain skill in grouping and faculty of grotesque suggestiveness that made his point a most useful weapon to William of Orange during the long struggle with Louis XIV.
The 18th century, however, may be called emphatically the age of caricature. The spirit is evident in letters as in art; in the fierce grotesques of Swift, in the coarser charges of Smollett, in the keen ironies of Henry Fielding, in the Aristophanic tendency of Foote’s farces, no less than in the masterly moralities of Hogarth and the truculent satires of Gillray. The first event that called forth caricatures in any number was the prosecution (1710) of Dr Sacheverell; most of these, however, were importations from Holland, and only in the excitement attendant on the South Sea Bubble, some ten years later, can the English school be said to have begun. Starting into active being with the ministry of Walpole (1721), it flourished under that statesman for some twenty years,—the “hieroglyphics,” as its prints were named, graphically enough, often circulating on fans. It continued to increase in importance and audacity till the reign of Pitt (1757–1761), when its activity was somewhat abated. It rose, however, to a greater height than ever during the rule of Bute (1761–1763), and since that time its influence has extended without a check. The artists whose combinations amused the public during this earlier period are, with few exceptions, but little known and not greatly esteemed. Among them were two amateurs, Dorothy, wife of Richard Boyle, 3rd earl of Burlington, and General George Townshend (afterwards 1st Marquess Townshend); Goupy, Boitard and Liotard were Frenchmen; Vandergucht and Vanderbank were Dutchmen. This period witnessed also the rise of William Hogarth (1697–1764). As a political caricaturist Hogarth was not successful, save in a few isolated examples, as in the portraits of Wilkes and Churchill; but as a moralist and social satirist he has not yet been equalled. The publication, in 1732, of his Modern Midnight Conversation may be said to mark an epoch in the history of caricature. Mention must also be made of Paul Sandby (1725–1809), who was not a professional caricaturist, though he joined in the pictorial hue-and-cry against Hogarth and Lord Bute, and who is best remembered as the founder of the English school of water-colour; and of John Collet (1723–1788), said to have been a pupil of Hogarth, a kindly and industrious humorist, rarely venturing into the arena of politics. During the latter half of the century, however, political caricature began to be somewhat more skilfully handled than of old by James Sayer, a satirist in the pay of the younger Pitt, while social grotesques were pleasantly treated by Henry William Bunbury (1750–1811) and George Moutard Woodward. These personalities, however, interesting as they are, are dwarfed into insignificance by the great figure of James Gillray (1757–1815), in whose hands political caricature became almost epic for grandeur of conception and far-reaching suggestiveness. It is to the works of this man of genius, indeed, and (in a less degree) to those of his contemporary, Thomas Rowlandson (1756–1827), an artist of great and varied powers, that historians must turn for the popular reflection of all the political notabilia of the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th centuries. England may be said to have been the chosen home of caricature during this period. In France, timid and futile under the Monarchy, it had assumed an immense importance under the Revolution, and a cloud of hideous pictorial libels was the result; but even the Revolution left no such notes through its own artists, though Fragonard (1732–1806) himself was of the number, as came from the gravers of Gillray and Rowlandson. In Germany caricature did not exist. Only in Spain was there to be found an artist capable of entering into competition with the masters of the satirical grotesque of whom England could boast. The works of Francesco Goya y Lucientes (1746–1828) are described by Théophile Gautier as “a mixture of those of Rembrandt, Watteau, and the comical dreams of Rabelais,” and Champfleury discovers analogies between him and Honoré Daumier, the greatest caricaturist of modern France.
The satirical grotesque of the 18th century had been characterized by a sort of grandiose brutality, by a certain vigorous obscenity, by a violence of expression and intention, that appear monstrous in these days of reserve and restraint, but that doubtless sorted well enough with the strong party feelings and fierce political passions of the age. After the downfall of Napoleon (1815), however, when strife was over and men were weary and satisfied, a change in matter and manner came over the caricature of the period. In connection with this change, the name of George Cruikshank (1792–1878), an artist who stretches hands on the one side towards Hogarth and Gillray, and on the other towards Leech and Tenniel, deserves honourable mention. Those of Cruikshank’s political caricatures which were designed for the squibs of William Hone (1779–1842) are, comparatively speaking, uninteresting; his ambition was that of Hogarth—the production of “moral comedies.” Much of his work, therefore, may be said to form a link in the chain of development through which has passed that ironical genre to which reference has already been made. In 1829, however, began to appear the famous series of lithographs, signed H.B., the work of John Doyle (1798–1868). These jocularities are interesting otherwise than politically; thin and weakly as they are, they inaugurated the style of later political caricature. In France, meanwhile, with the farcical designs of Edme Jean Pigal (b. 1794) and the realistic sketches of Henri Monnier (1805–1872), the admirable portrait-busts of Jean Pierre Dantan the younger (1800–1869) and the fine military and low-life drolleries of Nicolas Toussaint Charlet (1792–1845) were appearing. Up to this date, though journalism and caricature had sometimes joined hands (as in the case of the Craftsman and the Anti-Jacobin, and particularly in Les Révolutions de France et de Brabant and Les Actes des Apôtres), the alliance had been but brief; it was reserved for Charles Philipon (1802–1862), who may be called the father of comic journalism, to make it lasting. The foundation of La Caricature, by Philipon in 1831, suppressed in 1835 after a brief but glorious career, was followed by Le Charivari (December 1832), which is perhaps the most renowned of the innumerable enterprises of this extraordinary man. Among the artists he assembled round him, the highest place is held by Honoré Daumier (1808–1879), a draughtsman of great skill, and a caricaturist of immense vigour and audacity. Another of Philipon’s band was Sulpice Paul Chevalier (1801–1866), better known as Gavarni, in whose hands modern social caricature, advanced by Cruikshank and Charlet, assumed its present guise and became elegant. Mention must also be made of Grandville (J. I. I. Gérard) (1803–1847), the illustrator of La Fontaine, and a modern patron of the medieval skeleton; of Charles Joseph Traviès de Villers, the father of the famous hunchback “Mayeux”; and of Amedée de Noé, or “Cham,” the wittiest and most ephemeral of pictorial satirists. In 1840 the pleasantries of “H.B.” having come to an end, there was founded, in imitation of this enterprise of Philipon, the comic journal which, under the title of Punch, or the London Charivari, has since become famous all over the world. Among its early illustrators were John Leech (1817–1864) and Richard Doyle (1824–1883), whose drawings were full of the richest grotesque humour.
In 1862 Carlo Pellegrini, in Vanity Fair, began a series of portraits of public men, which may be considered the most remarkable instances of personal caricature in England.
For the later developments of caricature, it is convenient to take them by countries in the following sections:—
Great Britain.—During the later 19th century the term caricature, somewhat loosely used at all times, came gradually to cover almost every form of humorous art, from the pictorial wit and wisdom of Sir John Tenniel to the weird grotesques of Mr S. H. Sime, from the gay pleasantries of Randolph Caldecott to the graceful but sedate fancies of Mr Walter Crane. It is made to embrace alike the social studies, satirical and sympathetic, of Du Maurier and Keene, the political cartoons of Mr Harry Furniss and Sir F. C. Gould, theunextenuating likenesses of “Ape,” and “Spy,” and “Max,” the