Rowlandson, a famed English caricaturist and draftsman best known for satiric depictions of daily life, frequently improvised on a popular song that mocks the happiness of a man’s household: "Give me the sweet delights of life . . . A smoky house, a failing trade. Six squalling brats, and a scolding jade." Here, an inscription above the doorway refers to the ironic aphorism. As the dejected husband departs his home and barking wife, even his dog admonishes him with a howl.