Gin Lane and Beer Street

A listener named Amy sent me the most fascinating email:

“You might be interested in 18th century prints by satirist William Hogarth.  I teach high school history and my students love looking at his two contrasting engravings, one that sharply criticizes the effects of cheap gin on the poor in London and one that extols the virtues of beer. They are identically composed and comparing the two is fascinating. Parliament passed  a Gin Act  in the mid-18th century to try to combat the ill-effects of too much gin on the poor. The prints are titled Gin Lane and Beer Street and there are poems at the bottom of each print that support the subject.”

Beer StreetGin Lane