Superb Hancock and Awful Democrats


 “General Inspection”
  Cartoonist:  Thomas Nast
  Source:  Harper's Weekly
  Date:   August 14, 1880, p. 521

Click to return to previous version of this cartoon...

Click to return to previous version of this cartoon

Complete HarpWeek Explanation:
Instead of inspecting his army troops, presidential nominee General Winfield Hancock peers into the gaping maw of the emaciated Democratic Tiger, symbol of his political troops. After years of being shut out of the White House, Democrats are hungering for a victory so that they may enjoy the spoils of office: political patronage. Dr. Tanner, mentioned in the posters on the wall, was a controversial health reformer who promoted "therapeutic fasting" and argued that starvation was a state of mind. "Loaves and Fishes" is adapted from the New Testament miracle of Jesus feeding his mass of followers with only a few loaves of bread and fish. Cartoonist Thomas Nast used "loaves and fishes" as a catch-phrase to indicate political patronage (or "spoils").












Website design © 2001-2008 HarpWeek, LLC
All Content © 1998-2008 HarpWeek, LLC
Please submit questions to