The march to Finchley; 1799

William Hogarth

The march to Finchley; 1799
3 0 c m
40cm
actual image size: 28cm x 22cm

Full image caption

A later reproduction of Hogarth's painting of the March to Finchley, depicting the army unsteadily preparing to march north to confront the Jacobites in 1745. The image was engraved and published in 1750/51. The original painting was won in a lottery by one of the tickets Hogarth had given to the Foundling Hospital.
The scene is at St Giles Circus on Tottenham Court Road, between Gile's Nursery and the King Charles Pub out of which a number of prostitutes and women of ill repute lean out the window to watch the troops assemble below. With the King's troops all shown drunken, gambling, whoring and bare knuckle fighting, the satire was aimed at the state of the British army in the face of the Jacobite invasion in 1747. In the background there are serried ranks waiting to march north to quell the invasion. The scene famously includes a uniformed soldier in the troop of the judgement of Hercules attempting to decide between a pregnant ballad singer and a nun.

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