The Committee; or, Popery in Masquerade, by Roger L’Estrange. First edition, printed in London in 1680 by Mary Clark.
Roger L’Estrange (1616-1704) was a pamphleteer, journalist, MP, press censor, and notorious spy. This doggerel is a satirical attack on Commonwealth Parliamentarians, the Solemn League and Covenant, the Pope, the regicides, and various dissenting sects.
The unsigned engraving is heavily allegorical and includes letters of the alphabet keying various elements of the image to specific verses. Some of the images include a praying monkey, an armed mob, homunculi escaping from an open toilet (see close up, which would be nsfw if it were any more detailed), the Lords, Commons, and Church in chains (in the lower left, represented by Strafford, Gournay, and Laud, with a bust of King Charles toppled nearby), a talking dog, a talking horse, and a naked man at the table representing an “Adamite.” Others at the table representing various religious and political sects are labled “Muggleton,” “Ranter,” “Quaker,” “Anabaptist,” Indepen.,” ”Fifth Mon[archy],” and “Nailor.”
One folio, 56x42 cm.