NPG 1833 (1d)
4 of 7
|Handwritten account, (1914), of the painting by Henry Jamyn Brooks.|
no houses then existed between my studio and the river Thames. One day Lord Burton drove up in a carriage and pair. He at first seemed out of temper. "I had no idea" he said "that you lived so far out. Why! it has actually taken me twenty minutes to come here" I pointed out that it was no further out than the Queens Club. "Yes" said he "I would never have taken shares in it if I had known how far out it was". So London grows. Lord Burton told me during the sitting that he had just had a portrait of his wife painted by Millais, and that upon his complaining to the Artist that he did not consider the likeness quite satisfactory, "What does that matter" replied Millais "There you have a picture which will live for ever and be a delight to posterity" "But" said Lord Burton to me "I wanted a portrait of my wife, if I wanted a portrait of another lady I could have gone to Christies and bought one by Reynolds, Gainsborough or Romney" At this sitting Lord Burton gave me a commission to paint a portrait of Lady Burton, which commission, like many others, did not come off, as I could never get her ladyship to arrange for a sitting. In the case of Lord Burton, Mr Horsley and I had made a slight mistake, for as he remarked, I had put him between two men both of whom he had broken from; viz Mr Gladstone and Sir William Agnew.
Lady Dorothy Nevill told me some droll stories which made me laugh heartily. At the conclusion of one of these sittings I said "Lady Dorothy you are the most amusing sitter I have ever had" she replied, "Yes! my friends have often paid me a similar