A masterpiece by Poynter

A masterpiece by Poynter


Fun (28 August 1878): 91.

Facetious Old Gentleman: — “Are you aware, my good man, that you are doing a very rude thing??”

Son of Toil (sulkily): — “What do you mean?”

F. O. G.: — “Why, were you not taught at school that it was very rude to point?”

Like much late-Victorian humor, this cartoon relies upon a pun or other play on words, class differences, and a misunderstanding. Here the cartoonist makes a very bad pun on (a) the name of the painter E. J. Poynter, (b) pointing one’s finger at someone, and a (c) mason’s pointing brickwork. This kind of wordplay, which might be amusing when made off-the-cuff in conversation, seems hardly worth the time of the artist and engraver.

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