Page:English Caricaturists and Graphic Humourists of the nineteenth century.djvu/505

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WHY RICHARD DOYLE LEFT "PUNCH."

the bigotry of a self-chosen creed. Doyle was anything but narrow or over-scrupulous. It was not any of the cartoons which was the immediate occasion of the step that he took, nor was it (as some of the notices of him have intimated) any mere personal attachment to Cardinal Wiseman. 'I don't mind,' he said, 'as long as you keep to the political and personal side of the matter, but doctrines you must not attack.' Douglas Jerrold and Thackeray were not likely to appreciate this reversal of the general sentiment, which resents personal attack above all else. 'Look at the Times,' they argued; 'its language has been most violent, but the Catholic writers on its staff do not for that reason resign. They understand, and the world at large understands, that the individual contributor is not responsible for the opinions expressed by other contributors in articles with which he has nothing to do.' 'That is very well in the Times,' was Doyle's answer, 'but not in Punch. For the Times is a monarchy [we believe these were his very words], whereas Punch is a republic.' So, when a week or so later an article, attributed to Jerrold himself, jeeringly advised the Pope to 'feed his flock on the wafers of the Vatican,' it was too much for Doyle. Dignified protest was not sufficient now. To be any longer identified with a paper which could use such language was intolerable to the faithful soul. To ply his skilful fingers and busy inventive brain in behalf of those who scoffed at the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar was out of the question. His connection with Punch must cease. But is he bound in conscience to throw away a good income and congenial work, because there were expressed opinions different from his own in a paper in which, republic though it was, solidarity was scarcely possible? Who would expect that in a comic journal each and all of the contributors should agree with each and every sentiment expressed? Never mind; whatever Richard Doyle might have been strictly bound to do, generosity at least urged him to make the sacrifice—the sacrifice of his career, of his future success it may be. At least he could show that Catholic belief was no empty superstition, no set of mere traditional observances, which sat lightly on the man of culture, even if in his heart he accepted them at