Sunday, November 15, 2015

My Poll and My Partner Joe, 1790

My Poll and My Partner Joe, Isaac Cruikshank, 1790, Walpole Library.

My Poll and My Partner Joe, Isaac Cruikshank, 1790, Walpole Library.

Cruikshank's print accompanies a ballad drawn from the 1774 opera "The Waterman." It relates the tale of an unnamed waterman who is pressed into service. He spends years at sea, fighting and sailing through trying times. When peace is at last upon him, he returns home to find his wife Poll embracing his friend Joe. He relates that on the shocking site, he "boldly kick'd My POLL and my Partner JOE."

Our unfortunate waterman has curly brown hair that drapes onto his shoulders, under a tall cylindrical crowned round hat. A yellow neckcloth spotted with red hangs down over his double breasted red waistcoat which appears to be tucked into his white slops/petticoat trousers. The telltale blue sailor's jacket has brass buttons along the lapels and closed mariner's cuffs. At his waist is a yellow watch fob, and in his hand is a cudgel.

In this colorization, the former waterman's hair is white, his neckcloth pink with dark spots, his jacket red with cloth covered buttons, and his waistcoat striped with narrow horizontal blue.

It is not clear to me that Joe is a sailor, but here's a couple of images of he and Poll anyway!

No comments:

Post a Comment