Sir Marc Isambard Brunel

© National Portrait Gallery, London

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Sir Marc Isambard Brunel

by James Northcote
oil on canvas, 1812-1813
49 1/4 in. x 39 in. (1251 mm x 991 mm)
Given by the sitter's grandson, Henry Marc Brunel, 1895
Primary Collection
NPG 978

Sitterback to top

Artistback to top

  • James Northcote (1746-1831), Painter; pupil and biographer of Sir Joshua Reynolds. Artist or producer associated with 106 portraits, Sitter associated with 23 portraits.

This portraitback to top

Brunel's hand rests on drawings of the circular saws that he had invented for cutting veneers. Behind him is a model of one of his block-making machines.

Linked publicationsback to top

Events of 1812back to top

Current affairs

Prime Minister Spencer Perceval is assassinated in the lobby of the House of Commons by a bankrupt named John Bellingham. A new administration is formed under Lord Liverpool.
The Toleration Act is passed giving greater freedom of worship to dissenters in order to ensure their political loyalty.

Art and science

Actress Sarah Siddons retires from the London stage. Her final appearance is as Lady Macbeth, the role that made her famous, but the performance has to end after the sleepwalking scene because of the fervour of the audience.
Building of Regent's Canal begins under John Rennie.

International

United States declares war on Britain over grievances arising from British naval conduct in the French wars. American plan for attack on Canada fails and British troops under Sir Edward Pakenham force surrender of Detroit.
Wellington defeats French at Salamanca and enters Madrid.
Napoleon leads France in disastrous Russian campaign.

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