c.1766-1767. Oil on canvas, 46 x 60 cm. Private collection. Read Note.
The Esquilache Riots took place in Madrid on March 23, 1766. The Neapolitan minister of Charles III had made himself very unpopular with various economic reforms, but mainly by prohibiting the Spanish coat – a large cape – and the broad-brimmed hat. Presumably, the riots were also connected with the activities of the Jesuits in Spain; during the following days the King decreed their expulsion. Goya was in Madrid at the time of the riots and was an eyewitness of the unrest