by Thomas Phillips
oil on canvas, 1815
55 3/4 in. x 44 1/2 in. (1416 mm x 1130 mm)
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Artistback to top
- Thomas Phillips (1770-1845), Portrait painter. Artist associated with 215 portraits, Sitter in 4 portraits.
This portraitback to top
This portrait by Thomas Phillips of Joshua Brookes, the anatomist and founder of the Brookesian Museum of Comparative Anatomy, was painted 'by desire of the Students of Anatomy under his tuition'. In the course of forty years Brookes taught more than 5000 students at his school in Blenheim Street where the Brookesian Museum was housed. In the portrait Brookes is seated at a green-baize covered desk with an illustrated atlas of anatomy open before him and a quill in his hand. A large animal corpse is draped around the edge of the table and there is an animal embryo in this specimen jar on the shelf above him.
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Events of 1815back to top
Current affairsJohn and James Leigh Hunt are released from prison after a two year sentence for slandering the Prince of Wales in their outspoken, radical periodical the Examiner.
Corn Laws are introduced to protect against the collapse in prices which would inevitably follow peace with France, prompting riots in London.
Art and scienceHumphry Davy invents the miners' safety lamp though its reception is clouded by William Clanny and George Stephenson who present rival models in the same year.
British Institution arranges first in innovative series of Old Master exhibitions
provoking virulent attack on its patrons for neglecting contemporary art.
InternationalNapoleon returns to France from exile in Elba and resumes power until his abdication on 22 June; a period known as the 'Hundred Days'.
Battle of Waterloo concludes the Anglo-French struggle that had lasted more than a century. Peace of Vienna establishes Britain's global political, economic and imperial dominance which lasts for the next hundred years.