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The Homage-Giving: Westminster Abbey, 9th August, 1902

1 of 15 portraits of William Boyd Carpenter

The Homage-Giving: Westminster Abbey, 9th August, 1902, by John Henry Frederick Bacon, 1903 - NPG 6058 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

The Homage-Giving: Westminster Abbey, 9th August, 1902

by John Henry Frederick Bacon
oil on canvas, 1903
38 in. x 72 in. (965 mm x 1829 mm)
Bequeathed by Miss M.E.B. Samson through the Art Fund, in memory of her father, 1989
Primary Collection
NPG 6058

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This picture commemorates the part of the coronation ceremony during which the king, already crowned, receives the homage of the nobility and clergy. The focus to the portrait is one of the more touching moments in the proceedings. Kneeling before the king, the elderly Archbishop of Canterbury, Frederick Temple, had found difficulty in rising again. As The Times reported, 'the King himself takes him by the right hand to help to raise him. Slowly and painfully, as it seems, the Archbishop regains his feet, and then he leans forward and kisses the King on the cheek; but, as he turns to leave, the King takes him again by the hand and clasps it with a gesture of regard too spontaneous and cordial to escape the most casual observation'. Among the many identifiable figures, the Prince of Wales is shown in the foreground and Queen Alexandra is seated to the right.

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