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DOMINION of the SEAS.

December 1, 1783
Origin: England, London
OH: 8 1/2" x OW: 11 1/2"
Black and white etching
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 1960-157
The lower margin reads: "DOMINION of the SEAS./ BRITANNIA on board the FOX safe Moor'd in PORTLAND-road---As Mistress of the Sea, she receives/ Homage from the whole World. NB A distinction contended for by our present Peace Makers./ Pub.d by E. D'Archery S.t James's Street, Dec.r 1.st 1783."

By late 1783, Britain had regained partial control of the seas, and this satire comments on the Revolutionary allies who must now respect its restored power. The satirist symbolizes Britannia in the recently preferred peace pose, with an olive branch in one hand and a staff supporting two British flags in the other. She sits in a small boat moored in waters, identified as Portland Road, accompanied only by a small weasel-like animal, intended to represent Fox, perched on the prow. An approaching vessel carries the representatives of Holland, Spain, France, and America. Although each dips his country's flag into the water in a gesture of homage, their facial expressions belie any pleasure at the situation.

The NB in the lower margin is a direct reference to the continuing dispute among the nations for control of the seaways.
Provenance:Ex coll: H. Dunscombe Colt. Other known copies: none found at this time.