The Bottle: Plate II. He Is Discharged from His Employment for Drunkeness...designed and etched by George Cruikshank and published by David Bogue

The Bottle: Plate II. He Is Discharged from His Employment for Drunkeness...designed and etched by George Cruikshank and published by David Bogue

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This black and white etching is one of eight scenes drawn by George Cruikshank depicting the progressive degeneration of a family due to the evils of drinking. The print is an interior scene of a man, a woman, and three children. The father is no longer trim and energetic but is instead overweight. He sits despondently or in a drunken stupor next to the fire while the daughter hands a new bottle to the mother and the mother hands the daughter what appears to be a bundle of clothes. A cat walks across a table that is pushed against the wall. The flowers on the chest on the left droop while one of the figurines is lying on its side, and most of the dishes in the cupboard are gone, presumably pawned. The two younger children huddle together on a small table or footstool. This series is a folio edition. On the reverse of Plate I. is the title page of the series and an inscription from the artist, including the cost of one shilling or six shillings for prints block tinted for shading on finer paper. The series is contained in a portfolio.
This series of prints is by the English artist George Cruikshank (1792-1878). Cruikshank’s father, Isaac Cruikshank, was an artist who specialized in song sheets and caricatures and trained George and his brother Robert Cruikshank in these arts. George started as a caricaturist for magazines and children’s books. His most famous works included The Bottle and The Drunkard’s Children, designed and etched by Cruikshank to show the wickedness of alcohol. Cruikshank's father and brother were both alcoholics and he himself drank heavily until he took a vow of abstinence in 1847. These prints were published by David Bogue, who published most of Cruikshank’s works in the 1850s. David Bogue (1807–1856) was born in Scotland and moved to London in 1836. Bogue began working in Charles Tilt's bookshop as a publisher and bookseller in 1836 and became Tilt's partner in 1840. Bogue bought the shop in 1843. He was the principle publisher of Cruikshank’s short-lived periodicals, brief illustrated stories, and the Comic Almanack 1835-53. David Bogue published The Bottle series in 1847. Bogue suffered from heart disease and died in 1856 at the age of 48
Currently not on view
Object Name
Date made
Cruikshank, George
Bogue, David
place made
United Kingdom: England, London
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
ink (overall material)
image: 8 1/2 in x 15 in; 21.59 cm x 38.1 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Harry T. Peters "America on Stone" Lithography Collection
Chronology: 1840-1849
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Clothing & Accessories
Domestic Furnishings
Temperance Movement
Family & Social Life
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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