The Prince of Whales or the Fisherman at Anchor

George Cruikshank British
Published by M. Jones British

Not on view

This light-hearted marine triumph casts George, Prince of Wales as a sea monster distracted by pleasure. In January 1812 the prince had officially become Regent and Cruikshank emphasizes his fleshly self-indulgence and weakness for mistresses and flatterers. When he became Regent, the prince surprised his former Whig friends by retaining the Tory Spencer Perceval as chief minister. Perceval, the fisherman of the title, stands in a small boat holding his prize fast on a golden chain while being showered by the "Dew of Favor." The disgruntled Whigs at left receive only "the Liquor of Oblivion." Clearly bored with politics, the Regent eyes a buxom mermaid, his most recent mistress Isabella, Marchioness of Hertford. He ignores both her scowling merman husband, and a second mermaid, his former mistress Maria Fitzherbert. The background colonnade represents Carlton House, the prince’s palatial home on Pall Mall.

The Prince of Whales or the Fisherman at Anchor, George Cruikshank (British, London 1792–1878 London), Hand-colored etching

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.