Art Hx: Visual and Medical Legacies of British Colonialism

A colored print showing a white man standing over a steaming vat and stirring. Black arms and legs emerge from the steam, with fingers and toes curled in apparent pain. A speech bubble above the white man’s head reads "B-t your black Eyes! what you can't work because you're not well? - but I'll give you a warm bath, to cure your Ague, & a Curry-combing afterwards to put Spunk into you." Below the print reads “Mr Frances [sic] relates "Among numberless other acts of cruelty daily practised, "an English Negro Driver, because a young Negro thro sickness was unable to "work, threw him into a copper of Boiling-Sugar-juice, & after keeping him, "steeped over head & Ears for above Three Quarters of an hour in the boiling "liquid, whipt him with such severity, that it was near Six Months before he "recover'd of his Wounds & Scalding"------Vide Mr Frances Speech, corroborated by Mr Fox, Mr Wilberforce &c &c.' 23 April 1791”

Title: Barbarities in the West Indias [Indies]

Artist/Maker: James Gillray

Date: Published April 23 1791

Source: National Portrait Gallery, London

Copyright/Permissions: Barbarities in the West Indias [Indies]’ by James Gillray, published by Hannah Humphrey. Hand-coloured etching. Published 23 April 1791. 9 7/8 in. x 13 5/8 in. (250 mm x 347 mm) paper size. Purchased, 1947. Reference Collection NPG D12417. © National Portrait Gallery, London. Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0)

Location(s): London, England; West Indies

Art Hx