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Noël Coward

6 of 117 portraits of Sir Noël Coward

Noël Coward, by Yousuf Karsh, 1943 - NPG P245 - © Karsh / Camera Press

© Karsh / Camera Press

Noël Coward

by Yousuf Karsh
bromide print, 1943
12 5/8 in. x 10 1/8 in. (321 mm x 257 mm)
Given by Yousuf Karsh, 1984
Primary Collection
NPG P245

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Sitterback to top

  • Sir Noël Coward (1899-1973), Actor, playwright and composer. Sitter associated with 117 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002), Photographer. Artist associated with 155 portraits, Sitter in 1 portrait.

This portraitback to top

Karsh wrote on this portrait that photography 'has definite limitations… it is impossible to convey any impression of one of the most beautiful speaking voices it has ever been my good fortune to hear.'

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Events of 1943back to top

Current affairs

The War effort continues with women recruited to the Home Guard and Ernie Bevin introducing conscription of miners as coal output continues to flag. There is panic when a new anti aircraft weapon is heard for the first time in London and 173 people die in the crush to enter an air-raid shelter at Bethnal Green tube station.

Art and science

Barnes Wallis's bouncing bomb is used during Operation Chastise - the Dam busters Raid - to destroy three dams in the Ruhr area of Germany. The raid was considered a success, knocking out hydroelectric power, cutting off the water supply to industry and causing devastation through flooding. The operation also, however, cost the allies many lives, and the bouncing bomb was not used again.


The invasion of Sicily is successful thanks to Operation Mincemeat, in which false documents were planted on the body of a dead airman to mislead Germany into thinking that the Allied target was Sardinia. The invasion led to the fall of Mussolini and Italy joining the Allies. 42,000 German civilians are killed in a firestorm in Hamburg caused by the Allied bombing in Operation Gomorrah.

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