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His Majesty Receives

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Animalier and Satirist. His Majesty Receives is typical of the artist’s blend of humorous fantasy with satirical undertones. Beard wrote a book entitled Humor in Animals (1885), in which he “quotes” the fox describing his species as having a brutal sort of humor, which is brought on by its need to hunt and kill in order to survive. In this canvas, the fox, swaggering in a royal robe, intimidates a rabbit, while other rabbits and squirrels dressed like portly businessmen, look on. Beard’s painting may lampoon an episode of American political or social history, though its specific reference is not known.

Ortolja-Baird, Ljiljana. Animals in Art (National Gallery Series). New York: Watson-Guptil Publications, 2000.
Indianapolis Museum of Art
James E. Roberts Fund
18 x 24-1/8 in
Oil on canvas
Public Domain, Courtesy of the Indianapolis Museum of Art
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