Torture Scene

Torture Scene

Richard Doyle

Hand-coloured wood engraving by the Dalziels

4¾ x 3½ inches

Titmarsh, M. A. [W. M. Thackeray],Rebecca and Rowena, facing 76.

This disturbing scene shows ‘Roger de Cartwright’ about ‘to extort’ from an ‘elderly Israelite’ his ‘hundred crowns’ (76). Once again, Doyle and Thackeray reveal the racial hatred that underpins the Crusaders’ campaigns and ridicule, with grim humour, the chivalric pretensions of Scott’s novel. The ironic disjuncture between the cartoon style and the cruelty it depicts is a powerful affront to readers’ sensibilities, both Victorian and modern.

Scanned image and text by Simon Cooke.

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