The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

Advanced Collection search

Tennyson and his Circle


February 2014
Price: £9.99
ISBN: 978 1 85514 490 3
(Tennyson and His Circle)
Format: 140 x 197mm
Extent: 120pp to 136pp
Illustrations: 30 to 40 per title
Binding: Paperback with flaps
Category: Literary/Poetry/Art/History
Word count:
(First World War Poets)
(Tennyson and His Circle)

This product is supplied by the National Portrait Gallery Company Limited. For more information on the Company, click here. Every purchase supports the National Portrait Gallery.

The National Portrait Gallery’s series of compact, fully illustrated, historical guides to literary and artistic personalities and themes. Written by well-known contemporary authors, they examine the lives, thoughts and relationships within each selected group through works from the Gallery’s Collection.


Tennyson and His Circle by Lynne Truss Tennyson’s ascendency as England’s foremost poet coincided with one of the most significant inventions of the nineteenth century: photography. As Poet Laureate, Tennyson and those who moved in his circle became targets for the photographer’s lens. The resulting portraits by such pioneering spirits as Julia Margaret Cameron, offer a fascinating insight into an age when England felt itself to be the envy of the world. Lynne Truss’s insightful and often amusing text captures the spirit of the age through images of the famous, and provides a glimpse into the lives of a group of people crossing the threshold into the modern world.


Lynne Truss is a novelist, dramatist and non-fiction writer, best known for her 2003 bestselling book on punctuation, Eats, Shoots & Leaves. Her second novel, Tennyson’s Gift, set on the Isle of Wight in July 1864, led to the writing of Tennyson and His Circle.


Scientific techniques

Watch our playlist exploring scientific techniques used by the Gallery to unlock the secrets behind our Tudor portraits.

Watch now

Subjects and themes

Search the collection by themes - from pets to weddings!

Discover the Collection

Black History Month

Take a tour exploring our Collection created by Alayo Akinkugbe for Black History Month in 2020.

Take the tour

A Picture of Health

Learn about pioneers in medicine, health and social reform from 1840 to 1920.

Explore the timeline