on 14 September 2005
This book will delight any discerning reader interested in historical biography, the monarchy or the art of caricature. The cartoons and caricatures, many from the author's own
collection, are beautifully reproduced in this splendid tome.
Kenneth Baker's erudition shines through the elegant prose,
enabling the reader to re-evaluate the much maligned Prince Regent ("Prinny") who would become King George IV. Glimpses of George IV as a man of impeccable artistic taste peek out from behind the grotesque caricature of a gross pleasure-seeking king. The author's perceptive understanding of the political scene of the time enables him accurately to place George IV in the social and intellectual context in which he lived.
This book is a joy to read and a delight even to glance through, stopping to look at the cartoons and be amazed at the outrageous latitude allowed the cartoonists of the day. What a marvelous gift this book would make!
on 6 October 2005
What is delightful about this book is the range of prints Baker uses to illustrate George IV's life in caricature, including Marks, Seymour, Dent, Williams, and Woodward as well as the more famous images by Gillray, Rowlandson and Cruikshank. The book shows the true depth of the caricaturists operating at the time, and the freedom of expression that they were allowed in this Golden Age of Caricature, and the critique that George was subjected to. An inside story into his depravities as Prince of Wales, the Regency crisis and his tribulations with Caroline, the book is richly illustrated, and gives individual insights to each of the caricatures with often amusing anecdotes. A must for libraries of collectors, but also the perfect christmas present!