A Breach of
This painting shows a court case over a breach of promise to
marry. This was formerly a common law cause of action when a
man became engaged, often after seducing a woman, but later
changed his mind and refused to marry her. In this suit,
perhaps the bulldog in front of the crate promised himself
to the Boston Terrier pleading her case before the judge.
Letters, pictures, and jewelry lay on the ground to the
judge's right, probably evidence in the proceeding. The
puppies on the far left could even be the result of this
seduction. The court room spectators look on closely as they
watch this soap opera unfold.