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Fourteen Pen-and-Ink Cartoon Drawings. by Edmund J. Sullivan - Signed First Edition - 1917 -1918 - from G.Gosen Rare Books & Old Paper, ABAA, ILAB (SKU: 420)

Fourteen Pen-and-Ink Cartoon Drawings.

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Fourteen Pen-and-Ink Cartoon Drawings.

by Edmund J. Sullivan

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  • Signed
  • First
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About This Item

Sullivan, Edmund J. A Collection of Fourteen Original Pen-and-Ink Cartoon Drawings. They were drawn first in pencil, then retraced in ink by Edmund J. Sullivan. These anti-German drawings came after the Irish Uprising during Easter Week in 1916, in which Germany sought to arm the Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB). In the 1918 General Election, the last all-island election held in Ireland, Republicans won 73 seats out of 105, on a policy of separation from Westminster and Irish independence. E. J. Sullivan's cartoons relating to Germany's involvement in Ireland document the view held in Westminster that Germany was exploiting the desire for Irish independence for Germany's own selfish strategic goals, as personified by the Kaiser. Manuscript annotations on the verso of some of the sketches allow an insight into Edmund J. Sullivan's creative process, as he describes the meaning behind his cartoons.

Edmund Joseph Sullivan (1869 – 1933) followed in his artist father's footsteps, when he chose to work as an artist, choosing book illustration and graphic design. The acerbic satire evident in these anti-German cartoons shows Sullivan's enormous talent and his ability to work under a rush order deadline.

"The Evolution of Wilhelm," signed and dated in the upper right-hand corner Edmund J. Sullivan '18." An image of an Irish cross monument, around which a large snake has wound itself. At the foot of the monument is a grieving woman with her shawl drawn tightly around her. In the foreground, the Kaiser plays the violin in disguise, wearing a mardi gras mask and a crowned eagle on his hat. The inscription, "In Memory of Irish Soldiers Who Fell Fighting the Hun, on the base of the monument. On the verso is the following annotation: "The Evolution of Wilhelm / The Shan van voght and the snake charmer. / The Kaiser, disguised as an Irishman sneaks in professing to comfort the shan van voght, / in her sorrow; and surreptitiously charms back the snake. 'Tu l'as voulu, St. Georges.' / by Edmund J. Sullivan, ARWS." (The Sean-Bhean bhocht, Irish for the "Poor old woman" often spelled phonetically in this song as "Shan Van Vocht"), is a traditional Irish song from the period of the Irish Rebellion of 1798, and dating in particular to the lead up to a French expedition to Bantry Bay, that ultimately failed to get ashore in 1796.) Pencil annotations below the image relate to publication.

A complete list and description of each drawing is available on request.


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G.Gosen Rare Books & Old Paper, ABAA, ILAB US (US)
Seller’s Inventory #
Fourteen Pen-and-Ink Cartoon Drawings.
Edmund J. Sullivan
Edmund J. Sullivan
Book condition
second hand
Quantity available
Original drawings.
Place of Publication
Date Published
1917 -1918
Shan van voght, E J Sullivan, Kaiser Wilhelm, Political Cartoons, Cartoons,
Bookseller catalogs
Political History,; Original Art; World War I;

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G.Gosen Rare Books & Old Paper, ABAA, ILAB

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New York, New York
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