And just like that, in the space between two paintings, the shine has worn off and our married couple are fully in the throes of “the honeymoon is over.”
If it had ever really begun.
This is, after all, the marriage between two parties for the purposes of furthering family names, growing estate holdings, and/or enlarging coffers.
Marriage à-la-mode, a series of six pictures painted by William Hogarth between 1743 and 1745, are in the permanent collection of the National Gallery.
From the Wikipedia description:
In the second, The Tête à Tête (the name on its frame), called Shortly After the Marriage, there are signs that the marriage has already begun to break down. The husband and wife appear uninterested in one another, amidst evidence of their separate overindulgences the night before. A small dog finds a lady’s cap in the husband’s coat pocket, indicating his adulterous ventures. A broken sword at his feet shows that he has been in a fight. The open posture of the wife also indicates unfaithfulness. As Hogarth once noted: “A lock of hair falling thus cross the temples … has an effect too alluring to be strictly decent, as is very well known to the loose and lowest class of women.” The disarray of the house and the servant holding a stack of unpaid bills shows that the affairs of the household are a mess.
Slang term taken from the 1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue.