A SUGGESTED TRANSFORMATION OR REFORM OF THE REFORMED HOUSE Materials:
lithograph Production person:
Print made by John Doyle (HB) Published by: Thomas McLean Production place:
London, England Date: JUNE 7, 1842 Schools/Styles:
[British Museum Satires no number]
Description No. 732. A man standing in a doorway of the House of Commons at far left; a mace-bearer, leading a procession, preparing to enter the door; behind him, a man wearing a hat lettered with 'Interrogator' (John Arthur Roebuck), with the Speaker (Charles Shaw-Lefevre) holding up his train, followed by two men (Lord Russell and Sir Robert Peel).
Text from 'An Illustrative Key to the Political Sketches of H.B.', London 1844:
Mr. Roebuck, member for Bath, rendered himself so conspicuous as a reprover of bribery and corruption on the part, not only of individual members, but of committees which seemed disposed to stifle inquiry and compound undue returns, that it required no very great stretch of imagination to fancy him (dignity excepted,) the Speaker, and (as a matter of consequence,) to fancy the Speaker to be no more than one of his humble attendants. In front of his official cap he bears the word interrogatories. The word alludes to the following circumstance. Committees were sitting to try the merits of two elections, [one at Nottingham, and the other at St. Albans, and it was currently rumoured that as bribery on, both sides was pretty clear, the Committees had come to a compromise, in order to avoid at once both exposure and expence: - that the Whig Candidate should be declared duly elected at Nottingham, and the Tory Candidate at St. Albans. Mr. Roebuck made this compromise the ground of a most grave charge against the Committees, and gave notice that he should put certain interrogatories to several members upon the subject. In short, he acted the political prude with so much rigour and pertinacity, having the countenance of some of the leading members on both sides of the House, including Sir Robert Peel, and Lord John Russell, that the sketch is really no exaggeration. Severe in his newly-adopted office of Censor, he proceeds right onward to his purpose, preceded by the Mace-bearer, and followed by the speaker, now humbled to the condition of the Hon. Member's train-bearer, and by Sir Robert Peel, and Lord John Russell.