Gillray Caricatures: Coalition Ministries

Political divisions in the eighteenth century were not as great as those today, when membership of political parties is rigidly defined. Governments could include members of a variety of political opinions, as long as they could agree to work together on the pressing political questions of the day. Some governments were made up of very unpromising combinations however, such as the short-lived coalition between the Tory Lord North and the Whig Charles James Fox. Gillray issued a number of prints referring to this alliance including Coalition dance (D12334). In its original form, Coalition dance was the last of Gillray's prints to show Fox with a fox's head (see Anthropomorphism). Later impressions of the print, such as the one in the Gallery's collection, show him with his own caricatured features.

Gillray Caricatures