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The rivalry and corruption surrounding elections provides fertile ground for satirists. Gillray followed previous generations, including, famously, Hogarth, to explore the subject visually. His Election-candidates; - or - the Republican-goose at the top of the pole (D12891) shows election candidates scrambling up the pole (poll), for the seat of Westminster. This election was remarkable for the election of two radical candidates in place of the official candidates put forward by the Whigs and Tories. They are Sir Francis Burdett, represented as a goose and Thomas Cochrane, shown in sailor’s uniform.

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Charles James Fox ('The hustings')
by James Gillray, published by Hannah Humphrey
published 21 May 1796
NPG D12574

'The dissolution; or - the alchymist producing an aetherial representation'
by James Gillray, published by Hannah Humphrey
published 21 May 1796
NPG D12575

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