The Grand Old Janus by Joseph Swain

The Grand Old Janus

Joseph Swain

Fine art poster

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Product details The Grand Old Janus

The Grand Old Janus

Joseph Swain

'The Grand Old Janus', 1887. Gladstone is the statue of Janus, the Roman god of doorways. Janus is usually depicted with two faces looking in different directions. Janus approves the scene to the left in which a British policeman hands out summary justice to a ruffian. He disapproves of the scene to the right in which an armed officer, dressed in the style of the French police, deals with a similar ruffian. Even as early as the late Victorian period, the debate was being opened on whether or not British policemen should be armed. The view that it would only lead to the criminals arming themselves also is evidenced by the ruffian on the right having armed himself with a club. From Punch, or the London Charivari, November 26, 1887.

  • Image ref: 1151022
  • The Print Collector / Heritage-Images

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