Frederick Burnaby

1 portrait on display in Room 23 at the National Portrait Gallery

Frederick Burnaby, by James Jacques Tissot, 1870 - NPG 2642 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Frederick Burnaby

by James Jacques Tissot
oil on panel, 1870
19 5/8 in. x 24 in. (500 mm x 610 mm) overall
Purchased, 1933
Primary Collection
NPG 2642

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An officer of the Royal Horse Guards with a gift for languages and a penchant for travel and exploration, Burnaby became renowned both for his exploits and his writings about them. A Ride to Khiva (1876), the narrative of a journey on horseback across three thousand miles of the Russian steppes in winter, and On Horseback through Asia Minor (1877), which described a tour of Asia Minor during which he fought on behalf of the Turks against the Russians, were both best-sellers. A huge man, nearly two metres (six feet four inches) tall, he was reputed to be the strongest man in the British army and was said to have once carried a pony under one arm. He was painted by Tissot in his uniform as a captain in the 3rd Household Cavalry.

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