Royal divorce

Cartoon by George Cruikshank published November 1820 by John Fairburn, Broadway Ludgate Hill, London (TS 11/115/326 (33))

The cartoon attacked the Pain and Penalties Bill over the divorce issue in 1820 to deprive Caroline of her position as Queen and dissolve her marriage to George IV. The Pains and Penalties Bill was a way using Parliament without using the formal proofs essential in a court of law. Caroline was allowed to attend the hearing but not allowed to give evidence. However, the Bill was eventually defeated in Parliament. Caroline was, nevertheless, barred from George IV’s coronation and died shortly afterwards.

The caption reads: Boadicea Queen of Britain overthrowing her enemies. Humbly dedicated to Caroline of Britain and Ireland. Caroline of Brunswick, shown as Boadicea, is leading a crowd encouraged by a man calling out ‘come on my lads, Justice, the Queen and Old England for ever’.

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