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Edward Adrian Wilson

2 of 5 portraits of Edward Adrian Wilson

Edward Adrian Wilson, by Herbert George Ponting, 19 May 1911 - NPG P1366 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Edward Adrian Wilson

by Herbert George Ponting
gelatin silver print, 19 May 1911
12 1/4 in. x 15 1/4 in. (311 mm x 388 mm)
Purchased, 2010
Primary Collection
NPG P1366


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  • Herbert George Ponting (1870-1935), Photographer; antarctic explorer. Artist of 11 portraits, Sitter in 1 portrait.

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Wilson was the head of the scientific staff of the Terra Nova expedition, having previously served on Scott's Discovery expedition. He was a talented field naturalist with a keen ability to sketch his observations. This photograph shows him finishing a watercolour of the atmospheric effects caused by the extreme cold.
The final pages of Scott's journal included a letter to Mrs Wilson: 'If this letter reaches you Bill and I will have gone out together. We are very near it now and I should like you to know how splendid he was at the last - everlastingly cheerful and ready to sacrifice himself for others, never a word of blame to me for leading him into this mess… he died as he lived, a brave, true man - the best of comrades and the staunchest of friends.'

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