L'HOMME QUI RIT (?)

L'HOMME QUI RIT (?) by SIR JOHN TENNIEL

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Price £1,450.00

SIGNED WITH MONOGRAM AND DATED 1869
INSCRIBED WITH TITLE AND PUBLICATION DETAILS ON ORIGINAL MOUNT
PENCIL
8 1/4 X 6 1/4 INCHES
PROVENANCE: MARY GREEN (NEE TENNIEL). THE ARTIST'S SISTER,
AND THENCE BY FAMILY DESCENT
ILLUSTRATED: PUNCH, 5 JUNE 1869, PAGE 233
EXHIBITED: 'THE ILLUSTRATORS. THE BRITISH ART OF ILLUSTRATION 1837-2012',
NOVEMBER 2012 - JANUARY 2013, NO 118

L'Homme qui rit (?)
During the mid 1860s, a union between the left-wing internationalists and the republican bourgeoisie threatened the French Empire. Attempts to curb their threats led, by May 1869, to multiple strikes and to losses for the Imperial government in the parliamentary elections. Tenniel depicts Napoléon III (1852-1870) contemplating a vase that is inscribed with the names of the cities that returned the greatest losses. In titling his cartoon, he looked to L'Homme qui rit, the latest novel by Victor Hugo, which had been published two months earlier, in April 1869. Indeed, it became increasingly questionable that Napoléon III would ever laugh again, as France was set on a course that led to the end of Empire just a year later.

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