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Later Victorian Portraits Catalogue

Charles West Cope (1811-1890), History painter

History painter; born 28 July 1811, in Leeds. Studied at Royal Academy Schools and in Italy; exh. RA 1833–82; elected ARA 1843, RA 1848; founder member Etching Club 1838–85; muralist for Houses of Parliament 1845–66, with scenes from British history and literature; other subjects include Shakespearian themes; married 1840 Charlotte Benning (d.1868), 1879 Eleanor Smart; father of ten, including artist Arthur Stockdale Cope; retired c.1881; died 21 August 1890, in Bournemouth.

‘He retained the vigour of his intellectual powers, his keenness of observation, and his humour till the end.’ [1]

The National Portrait Gallery owns a collection of portrait sketches by Cope, mainly of older contemporaries (see NPG Portrait Set ‘Drawings of artists by Charles West Cope, circa 1862’), together with an oil sketch of J.M.W. Turner (NPG 2943).

Dr Jan Marsh

Footnotesback to top

1) Monkhouse 1901, p.61.

Referencesback to top

Cope 1891
Cope, C.H., Reminiscences of Charles West Cope RA, London, 1891.

Furniss 1890b
Furniss, H., Royal Academy Antics, London, 1890.

Gould 2004
Gould, V.F., G.F. Watts: The Last Great Victorian, London, 2004.

Lambourne & Hamilton 1980
Lambourne, L., and J. Hamilton, comp., British Watercolours in the Victoria and Albert Museum: An Illustrated Summary of the National Collection, London, 1980.

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

McMaster 2008
McMaster, J., ‘That Mighty Art of Black-and-White: Linley Sambourne, Punch and the Royal Academy’, British Art Journal, Autumn 2008, pp.62–76.

McMaster 2009
McMaster, J., That Mighty Art of Black-and-White: Linley Sambourne, Punch and the Royal Academy, Edmonton, Canada, 2009.

Monkhouse 1901
Monkhouse, W.C., ‘Cope, Charles West (1811–1890)’, DNB, supplement, London, 1901, pp.59–62.

Ormond 2010
Ormond, L., Linley Sambourne: Illustrator and Punch Cartoonist, London, 2010.

Robertson 2004
Robertson, D., ‘Cope, Charles West (1811–1890)’, ODNB, Oxford, 2004.

Victoria and Albert 1927
Catalogue of Water Colour Paintings by British Artists and Foreigners Working in Great Britain, rev. ed., London, 1927.