Anonymous Artists

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Dick Whittington (S)
19.5 x 26.5 inches
INV. #:
Original. Mounted on acid free archival linen.

A pantomime is a uniquely British form of theatre entertainment, usually performed around New Year. Usually it tells a fairy tale, but in the case of Dick Whittington there is some truth to the story. Richard Whittington was a rich merchant and philanthropist, who came from a wealthy family in Gloucestershire. He was born sometime round 1350, and he did marry Alice Fitzwarren. He became Lord Mayor of London three times (in 1397, 1406 and 1419) before his death in 1423. There is no evidence that he ever had a cat! Rats are probably included as the villains in the story because they carried the Black Death, or Bubonic Plague, so they caused a lot of fear. This play has been preformed since 1605, and first became a pantomime in 1814.