Punch,  15 (1848), 151.

Dirty Father Thames

N, pseud.  [William Newman] *


Poetry, Drollery; Illustration, Satire

Relevant illustrations:



N, pseud.  [William Newman] *


Pollution, Disease, Politics

Institutions mentioned:

Corporation of London

    The poem represents the Thames as a 'foul' and 'filthy' river. It is nothing but 'one vast gutter' whose 'bubbly bosom' brews 'mephitis' inhaled by 'Christian folks'. Observes how the river is a receptacle for all the city's 'foul abominations', but, also the 'vile cesspool' from which beer is made. Ends by reminding the Lord Mayor (John K Hooper) that 'He who fills the civic chair' has maintained this dire state of affairs. The illustration shows a decrepit 'Father Thames' walking on the bottom of his river, dressed in rags and spearing gruesome objects on the river bed.

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