Sir William Schwenck Gilbert

1 portrait of Sir William Schwenck Gilbert

Sir William Schwenck Gilbert, by Elliott & Fry, 1891 - NPG x127431 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Sir William Schwenck Gilbert

by Elliott & Fry
chlorobromide print on cream card mount, 1891
10 3/8 in. x 7 5/8 in. (264 mm x 194 mm) image size
Given by John Morton Morris, 2004
Photographs Collection
NPG x127431


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  • Elliott & Fry (active 1863-1962). Artist associated with 10915 portraits.

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This photograph was taken during his year of estrangement from Sullivan following the so-called 'carpet quarrel' of 1890, when Gilbert took D'Oyly Carte to court for financial mismanagement and Sullivan sided with Carte. Gilbert was quick to anger. When knighted in 1907, he was furious about being described as a playwright instead of a dramatist. He spent his retirement in his country estate, Grim's Dyke. He drowned aged seventy-four having dived into his lake to assist a distressed swimmer. His memorial on the Victoria Embankment contains the epitaph: 'His foe was folly and his weapon wit.'