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National Liberal "Underwear" (1900)

The National Liberal Party was one of the government’s key supporters in parliament. In an attempt to increase its popular support, the party began to reach out to left-liberal Progressives in the hope of uniting all liberals within a single party. The attempt failed, and many blamed the National Liberal leadership for getting cold feet. This cartoon from Simplicissimus addresses the National Liberals’ timidity. Here, they are portrayed as being frightened by the prospect of upsetting the government and having to go into the opposition. The text reads: “National Liberal Underwear. ‘Ah, the honorable gentleman has had to oppose the government.’”

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National Liberal

© Bildarchiv Preußischer Kulturbesitz / Kunstbibliothek, SMB
Original: Kunstbibliothek, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin