Jonathan Swift and tipping

jonathan swift

Alfred Mills (1776-1833), Dean Swift and the Post Boy, February 3, 1806. Hand colored etching. Graphic Arts Collection GA 2014- in process

The text below this caricature reads:
“A Gentleman employed a Post Boy to carry a present of a Turbot to Dean Swift, who seldom gave the bringer anything for his Trouble, the Boy knowing this delivered it in an awkward & careless manner which discomposed the Doctor, who thereupon determined to teach him good Manners: “sit down in my Chair” said he “and suppose yourself to be the Dean and I will represent you” – on which the Dean delivered the Turbot and Message with great Politeness, – “well done” said the Boy “you are a very civil Fellow, here is five shillings for you and pray give my Compliments to your Master” – the Dean took the Hint, smil’d at the Joke, and rewarded him with half a Guinea.”

Note the manuscript on the table is Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift, who was Dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin.

Jonathan Swift (1667-1745), Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World: In four parts by Lemuel Gulliver, first a surgeon, and then a captain of several ships. [3rd ed.] (London: Printed for Benj. Motte, 1726). Rare Books (Ex) PR3724 .G7 1726c

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