Punch,  15 (1848), 244.

The Electric Light–Shameful Exposure of Trafalgar Square

A Gas Contractor


Letter, Spoof


Light, Electricity, Technology, Invention, Morality, Politics

    Regards the 'Electric Light' as an 'impertinent and presumptuous' invention and an attempt to destroy the interests of darkness and the appearance of celestial objects. Objects strongly to the light being tested in Trafalgar Square, because it inhumanely exposes the nymphs at night-time and makes the square 'sport for the stranger' all day and night. Appends other responses to this invention, including one 'gentleman' who could read much more writing than he had perceived before, another gentleman who, having caught, by use of the light, his lover handing a pigeon pie to a mounted guardsman, judged the invention to be 'a great agent in public morality', and Benjamin Disraeli, who, 'standing opposite the Treasury, by the astonishing power of the Electric Light saw himself—in office'.

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