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The fourth plate of The Four Times of Day, 'Night', shows a chaotic scene near Charing Cross. Numerous different individual scenes are layered one on top of another, forming a sense of mayhem, noise, and most importantly, collage. On the right of the print, a crashed coach is seen on fire with its passengers madly trying to escape. Meanwhile, a servant is accompanying a freemason home, he has been identified as Thomas de Veil, a real-life magistrate known for heavy drinking. He is apparently oblivious to the urine being poured from a window onto him. Behind him, a barber can be seen shaving a client. Amongst all this chaos, a homeless family is sleeping beneath a small shelter. Not only do these layered scenes result in a sense of collage, but the street signs, all advertising varying establishments, contribute further to this effect. They remind us of collage, with portraits, still life, and other curious objects. The collage effect is also achieved with the layering of space. The foreground is obviously where most of the action takes place, but Hogarth does not overlook the background, where a heavily laden cart can be seen leaving the bleak environment that Hogarth depicts London to be. Hogarth renders the streetscape as an incredibly enclosed space, which can likewise be seen in the other prints from this series. This chaotic scene suggests a lack of escape, which is reiterated by the passengers struggling to escape the burning coach.

- Ed Scobie

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