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The Colossus of the North; or The Striding Boreas.

1774
Origin: England, London
OH: 7 1/4" x OW: 8"; Plate H: 6 1/4" x W: 7 1/2"
Black and white etching and engraving
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 1960-50
The upper margin bears the title. The lower margin reads: "See our Colossus strides with Trophies crown'd,/ And Monsters in Corruption's Stream abound."

Lord North is pictured as the Colossus of Rhodes. With his feet firmly planted on two raised blocks labeled "Tyranny" and "Venality, North straddles a stream flowing from Westminster Hall in which members of Parliament swim. In his left hand, he holds a burning torch, America, and in his right, he has schemes to raise funds for the impoverished British exchequer. The reference in the title to Boreas, god of the north wind, symbolizes the political power that North has acquired in the pre-Revolutionary period.

Wilkes, recently elected lord mayor of London, and Britannia stand on the far side to the stream. Britannia holds a banner protesting "Those that should have been my preservers have been my destroyers."

This print was published in the London Magazine.
Provenance:Ex coll: H. Dunscombe Colt. Other copies in Halsey Collection at Brown, Peel collection at Morgan Library and the New York Public Library Collection.