Guided by Satan Dighton, Robert (Senior) [1752-1814]. A Lawyer and His Agent. London: Printed and Sold by Bowles & Carver, 18 April 1795. 14-1/2" x 10-1/2" hand-colored mezzotint mounted on 16-1/2" x 12-3/4" sheet. Light soiling and minor edgewear to margins of print, colors vivid. A well-preserved image. $2,500. * Observed by an amused clerk in the adjacent room, Satan, with a handful of bills, reminds the lawyer to enrich himself by trapping his client in an endless chancery suit. Pointing to the document before them, apparently an action to delay a case, the lawyer shows that he is taking that advice. And not, indeed, for the first time. The stacks of paper behind the door record a case that began in 1787 and ended in 1792. A bundle of documents on the table has a cover sheet reading "In Chancery 20 Years." On the floor, by the lawyer's right foot, there is yet another sack of documents. One of them peaking out of the top has is captioned: "Laid by 'till next term." On the wall behind the lawyer are an almanac, a court-term calender and an allegorical image of a shark devouring a school of fish. Dighton was a portrait painter, printmaker and caricaturist known for his satirical views of elite Londoners. This print is based on a colored etching from 1793. Padbury, A View of Dightons: The Dighton Family, Their Times, Caricatures and Portraits 85. Stephens and George, Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum 3765.
Book number 71821