© National Portrait Gallery, London
by William Strang Click on the links below to find out more
11 5/8 in. x 8 1/2 in. (296 mm x 216 mm)
Given by the sitter's grandson, Lord Bridges, 1988
- William Strang (1859-1921), Painter and etcher. Artist associated with 65 portraits, Sitter in 11 portraits.
This portrait is goldpoint, a technique rarely used since the Renaissance. Made by drawing with a metal stylus over a prepared ground - tinted pink in this case - metalpoints keenly test the skill of the artist since the delicate line cannot be erased. The profile drawing of Bridges formed the basis of an etching by Strang which the poet thought showed him as 'a cross between Moses and an old lion'.
The UK Parliament passes the Irish Local Government Act, which establishes a mixed system of local government in Ireland similar to that in Great Britain, notably creating new, directly elected county councils, and extending the electoral franchise to include all male householders and occupiers. Charles Pelham Villiers, Britain's longest-serving Member of Parliament, dies. Villiers entered Parliament in 1835 as Liberal MP for Wolverhampton.
Art and science
The French physicists Pierre and Marie Curie discover the strongly radioactive elements polonium and radium, paving the way for cancer therapy and nuclear physics. H.G. Wells's highly influential science fiction novellaThe War of the World
is published, describing an invasion of England by aliens from Mars.
The Spanish-American war takes place after Spain fails to meet America's demands to peacefully resolve the Cuban fight for independence. America secures victory after a series of quick naval and military victories in the Philippines and Cuba. Later this year, the Treaty of Paris gives the US ownership of the former Spanish colonies of Puerto Rico, the Philippines and Guam, the US also taking control of Cuba, ending the uprising and granting independence.