A Short Ride in the Long Walk — or The Ponies Posed, 1824

This print is a caricature of George IV dating from 1824. It shows the overweight king and his mistress in a carriage.

What can we see?

Out and about

By the mid 1820s George IV was suffering from gout and obesity, and rarely ventured far from Windsor.

Of the few outdoor pleasures remaining, George enjoyed driving his pony chaise in Windsor Great Park, often visiting his private menagerie of exotic creatures at Sandpit Gate.

Brave ponies

This hand-coloured etching by William Heath shows two brave ponies buckling under the combined weight of the King and his mistress Lady Conyngham.

In spite of the visible strain of the horses, the carriage wheel is not turning.

Better days behind

In his younger days, George was a highly accomplished and competitive horseman. Here we can see a sleek white horse looking on, a representation of George’s past passion for noble horses.

Author: Beverley Green

 

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