Plate VII

The Husband, in a State of Furious Drunkenness, Kills His Wife with the Instrument of All Their Misery., 1847

George Cruikshank; Publisher: Frederick Arnold, London


Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Patrick Butler P.

Not on View

Enormously popular in its day, George Cruikshank's "The Bottle," is an illustrated morality tale advocating temperance by depicting the insidious and evil effects of drinking. In this scene, one of eight relief prints in the series, Cruikshank depicts the dramatic climax to the progressive deterioration of an alcoholic father and his family. The lead players include the mother, who now lies dead on the floor; the drunken husband, who has just murdered his wife; and a broken bottle, the symbol of their decline. Policemen in top hats tend to the scene, seizing the remorseful husband, while the couple's son and daughter weep in disbelief.

Image: Public Domain. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Patrick Butler

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