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

Later Victorian Portraits Catalogue

Edward John Gregory (1850-1909), Painter in oils and watercolour

Painter; born 19 April 1850, in Southampton. With his friend Hubert von Herkomer attended classes at Southampton School of Art and South Kensington Art School 1869; briefly studied at Royal Academy Schools; worked for the Graphic 1871–5; exh. RA 1875–1906; elected ARA 1883, RA 1898; President, Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours 1898–1909; died 22 June 1909, at Great Marlow, Bucks.

Gregory’s watercolours were thought remarkable for their ‘originality of conception and exquisite qualities of colour’. He exhibited regularly but not ever prolifically: ‘… Mr. Gregory, the quantity of whose production never satisfies his admirers’.[1]

This good-natured, and thoughtful, capable, great burly blond had the most hopelessly disconcerting and amusing stutter that it was ever given to me to hear.… The spirit of compromise was not in Gregory; he made no terms with any word with which he was in difficulty. There was no getting round it; Gregory was intransigent; the word had to be produced – that and no other – though you waited for three mortal minutes, respectfully, considerately, as if you did not notice his travail. It was a relief when the explosion came.[2]

Carol Blackett-Ord

Footnotesback to top

1) The Times, 1 Apr. 1886, p.9 (in preview of London spring exhibitions).
2) Wedmore 1912, p.106–7.

Referencesback to top

Bills & Webb 2007
Bills, M., and D. Webb, eds, Victorian Artists in Photographs: [The World of G.F. Watts]. Selections from the Rob Dickins Collection, exh. cat., Watts Gallery, Compton, 2007.

Bradshaw 1958
Bradshaw, P.V., Brother Savages and Guests, London, 1958.

Fenwick 2004b
Fenwick, S., ‘Gregory, Edward John (1850–1909)’, ODNB, Oxford, 2004; online ed., October 2006.

Furniss 1887b
Furniss, H., Harry Furniss’s Royal Academy: ‘An Artistic Joke’, London, 1887.

Herkomer 1910–11
Herkomer, H. von, The Herkomers, 2 vols, London, 1910–11.

Maas 1975
Maas, J., Gambart: Prince of the Victorian Art World, London, 1975.

Maas 1984
Maas, J., The Victorian Art World in Photographs, London, 1984.

Meldrum 1912
Meldrum, D.S., ‘Gregory, Edward John (1850–1909)’, DNB, London, 1912.

Mills 1923
Mills, J.S., Life and Letters of Sir Hubert Herkomer: A Study in Struggle and Success, London, 1923.

Robinson [1892]
Robinson, R.W., Members and Associates of the Royal Academy of Arts, 1891. Photographed in their Studios by Ralph W. Robinson of Redhill, n.p, [1892].

Swanson 1990
Swanson, V.G., The Biography and Catalogue Raisonné of the Paintings of Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, London, 1990.

Walkley 1994
Walkley, G., Artists’ Houses in London 1764–1914, Aldershot, 1994.

Ward 1923
Ward, E.A., Recollections of a Savage, London, 1923.

Watson 1907
Watson, A., The Savage Club: A Medley of History, Anecdote and Reminiscence, London, 1907.

Wedmore 1912
Wedmore, F., Memories, London, 1912.