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The Police Office

GUL, Sp Coll, Northern Looking Glass

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The Police Office

Coloured cartoon from the Northern Looking Glass 9 January 1826 entitled "The Police Office". It is the sixth in the series depicting the events of a typical Hogmany in Glasgow.

The scene is set at 10 o'clock on New Year's Day. "Alas the mirth and fun of the preceding hours has evaporated and is succeeded by languor, sickness, painful bruises, the fears of the law, Bailie Somebody the Sitting Magistrate, and the Jail or the Bridewell; whilst the torn clothes and empty pockets of such that may chance to come off with a reprimand only, will furnish ample topics to the Gude-Wife to enlarge upon, for at least a month after the return of the unhappy culprit to his home and his usual occupation; he makes vows and resolutions of future self-command and sobriety - sure to be broken at least on that day twelve month - if not at a much earlier period".

While one of the prisoners is violently sick and three lie asleep or comatose, there is a riot outside in the street. The rioters are all women - perhaps the wives of the hung-over men within?

Reference: Sp Coll Bh14-x.8

Glasgow University Library, Special Collections

bottles, bridewells, drinking, drunks, fighting, gaols, Glasgow Looking Glass, hangovers, Hogmanay, jails, lithographs, New Year's Day, Northern Looking Glass, prisoners, prisons, riots, sickness, vomiting, women

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