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La Délivrance

   
 

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For the cover of the October 26, 1871 issue of L'Eclipse André Gill modified his original illustration of La Delivrance to meet the censors' demands.

 


Hand-colored Engraving
12"w x 18"h

   
 

Gill used clouds to conceal the figures at the base of the drawing after censors ruled that they could not be published.

   
   
 

In 1870-71, France fought and lost the Franco-Prussian war. Prussia imposed a large indemnity which until paid, meant that Prussian troops would occupy France.

André Gill drew a caricature that depicted President Adolphe Thiers "delivering" from Mother France the debt that was owed to Prussia. At his feet stood three figures that represented the fallen Bourbon, Orleanist, and Bonapartist Dynasties -- dejected Royalist sympathizers who had hoped to regain the throne. The quick repayment of the indemnity was seen as a triumph for Thiers and the newly established Third Republic, and a blow to Royalist sympathizers.

Gill's republican sympathies were well know and the eagle was a recognized symbol of the deposed Napoleon III. The identities of the figures were decipherable to politically astute readers.

               
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