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William Ewart Gladstone

(1809-1898), Prime Minister and writer; Trustee of the National Portrait Gallery

Early Victorian Portraits Catalogue Entry

Sitter associated with 321 portraits
Famous as the ‘grand old man’ of British politics; Gladstone was leader of the Liberal Party and prime minister in four governments from 1868 to 1894. Gladstone was responsible for major reforms in every sphere of national life, and for the development of imperial foreign policy. He divided the party on the issue of Irish Home Rule and stamped his moral authority on the politics of his time. Gladstone’s father, John Gladstone was one of the largest owners of enslaved Africans in the Caribbean and this wealth supported Gladstone’s early career in politics. As a politician, Gladstone supported the proposal to compensate slave-owners for the loss of their ‘property’ after slavery was abolished and the introduction of the apprenticeship system that required newly freed Africans to continue working for their masters for four to six years.

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Engraving after 'The Coalition Ministry, 1854', by William Walker, after  Sir John Gilbert - NPG 1125a

Engraving after 'The Coalition Ministry, 1854'

by William Walker, after Sir John Gilbert
engraving, 1857
NPG 1125a

William Ewart Gladstone, by George Frederic Watts - NPG 1126

William Ewart Gladstone

by George Frederic Watts
oil on panel, 1859
NPG 1126

Gladstone's Cabinet of 1868, by Lowes Cato Dickinson - NPG 5116

Gladstone's Cabinet of 1868

by Lowes Cato Dickinson
oil on canvas, 1869-1874
NPG 5116

William Ewart Gladstone, by Carlo Pellegrini - NPG 1978

William Ewart Gladstone

by Carlo Pellegrini
watercolour, published in Vanity Fair 6 February 1869
NPG 1978

William Ewart Gladstone, by Sydney Prior Hall - NPG 2309

William Ewart Gladstone

by Sydney Prior Hall
pencil, 1875-1900
NPG 2309

William Ewart Gladstone, by Sydney Prior Hall - NPG 2310

William Ewart Gladstone

by Sydney Prior Hall
pencil, 1875-1900
NPG 2310

William Ewart Gladstone, by Sir John Everett Millais, 1st Bt - NPG 3637

William Ewart Gladstone

by Sir John Everett Millais, 1st Bt
oil on canvas, 1879
NPG 3637

William Ewart Gladstone, by Harry Furniss - NPG 3359

William Ewart Gladstone

by Harry Furniss
pen and ink, 1880s-1900s
NPG 3359

William Ewart Gladstone, by Harry Furniss - NPG 3360

William Ewart Gladstone

by Harry Furniss
pen and ink, 1880s-1900s
NPG 3360

William Ewart Gladstone, by Harry Furniss - NPG 3361

William Ewart Gladstone

by Harry Furniss
pen and ink, 1880s-1900s
NPG 3361

William Ewart Gladstone, by Harry Furniss - NPG 3363

William Ewart Gladstone

by Harry Furniss
pen and ink, 1880s-1900s
NPG 3363

William Ewart Gladstone, by Harry Furniss - NPG 3365

William Ewart Gladstone

by Harry Furniss
pen and ink, 1880s-1900s
NPG 3365

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