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Effet Des Mitrailleuses

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Paris (printed)

  • Date:

    1870-1871 (printed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Jann, A. (caricaturist)
    Wentzel, F. (printer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Hand-coloured lithograph on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level C, case GG, shelf 210

Physical description

Satirical print in which the German emperor Wilhelm I staggers, encased in a beer mug, which breaks up under fire from a 'mitrailleuse', a precursor to the machine gun. On top of his helmet is a bird, pierced by a fork. Print from a set of caricatures, broadsheets and illustrations in ten volumes. Each volume is half-bound in red leather, gold tooled and stamped with imperial emblems, title etc.

Place of Origin

Paris (printed)


1870-1871 (printed)


Jann, A. (caricaturist)
Wentzel, F. (printer)

Materials and Techniques

Hand-coloured lithograph on paper

Marks and inscriptions

'Actualités 4. F. Wentzel, Imp. Editeur, rue St. Jacques, 65, Paris. Effet Des Mitrailleuses / Tant va la . . . . choppe au feu, qu’a la fin elle se casse'
Title, lettered below design.

'A. Jann'


Height: 33.6 cm, Width: 19.3 cm

Descriptive line

'Effet Des Mitrailleuses'. Satirical illustration by A. Jann in which the German emperor Wilhelm I staggers, encased in a beer mug, which breaks up under fire from a 'mitrailleuse'. Hand-coloured lithograph, France, 1870-1871.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Lambert, Susan, The Franco-Prussian War and The Commune in Caricature 1870-71: catalogue of a collection of prints in the possession of the Department of Prints and Drawings of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, V&A, 1971
Victoria & Albert Museum Department of Prints and Drawings and Department of Paintings, Accessions 1962. London: HMSO, 1964.

Labels and date

A. Jann

King William staggers, replete with food and drink, encased in a beer mug, which breaks up under fire from a mitrailleuse. The French put great faith in this new weapon, a primitive precursor of the machine gun, which consisted of a bundle of 25 barrels which could be fired either simultaneously or in rapid succession. Unfortunately, because it had been manufactured in conditions of strict secrecy and issued to the troops only a few days before mobilisation, none of the soldiers knew how to use it. Nor did the mitrailleuse come up to expectation in the field; it was as unwieldy and vulnerable as Herr Krupp's cannon without the latter's advantages.

Lithograph, coloured by hand. E.829-1962 [27/05/1971-10/10/1971]




Lithography; Hand-colouring

Subjects depicted

Mugs; Tankards; Sword; Forks; Spurs


Prints; Caricatures & Cartoons


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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