George and Robert Isaac Cruikshank. "Midnight. Tom and Jerry at a Coffee Shop near the Olympic." From Pierce Egan's Life in London.
London, 1820. Octavo. 4 x 7 1/4 (image). Aquatint by G. and R.I. Cruikshank. Full, original hand color.
In the early nineteenth century, the English perfected the humorous illustrated story. These works, issued in an octavo format, were extremely popular with the British public. This popularity was primarily based on their delightful illustrations. Amongst the best of the illustrators were George and Isaac Robert Cruikshank. The sons of Isaac Cruikshank, a well known caricaturist in his own right, George and Isaac R. contributed to a number of publications, the most famous of which is this work. In these wonderful prints, Jerry Hawthorn and Corinthian Tom are shown in various scenes of Regency London. Thus not only are these charming examples of the work of the Cruikshanks, but they provide an insightful look into 'Life in London.'