As a placement student at Abbey House Museum, I get to spend my time looking through their fantastic collections. I’m currently helping develop some initial ideas for an upcoming exhibition on Fantasy and Fairy Tales. Everyday I’m surprised by what I find here at Abbey House, and today I’m excited to share one of those discoveries.
One of my favourites (pictured above) is taken from a publication called The Political Drama. It shows the French King Louis Philippe I, dressed to the nines in royal garb and … shaped like an egg. He’s sitting on a wall and his across his stomach reads ‘A Rotten Egg’.
After the abdication of Napoleon, Louis Philippe returned to France from exile: in 1830 he was declared the new King of France. However, the reference to Humpty Dumpty in this cartoon reminds us that things, once broken, are not easily mended. The Bastille and the guillotine – great icons of the anti-royalist French Revolution – loom over King Louis’ reign. Can things ever return to normal after such a great fall, the cartoonist asks?