Sir Marc Isambard Brunel
- Extended Catalogue Entry
Sir Marc Isambard Brunel
by Samuel Drummond
oil on canvas, circa 1836
50 in. x 40 in. (1270 mm x 1016 mm)
Artistback to top
- Samuel Drummond (1765-1844), Portrait and history painter. Artist associated with 58 portraits, Sitter in 1 portrait.
This portraitback to top
On the table are some of Brunel's inventions; a miner's safety lamp, a cotton-winding machine and a model of a lighthouse. The background view of the Thames Tunnel is based on a painting by Thomas Bury.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Audio Guide
- Smartify image discovery app
- Cooper, John, Great Britons: The Great Debate, 2002, p. 108 Read entry
I. K. Brunel's French father, Marc, was a brilliant engineer who built the world's first tunnel through soft ground under a river. Despite Marc Brunel's invention of the tunnelling shield, to protect men whilst working, the building of the Thames Tunnel was beset by problems and deaths, taking from 1825 to 1842 to complete. His son took over as chief engineer on the project, aged only twenty-one.
- Hart-Davis, Adam, Chain Reactions, 2000, p. 109
- Holmes, Richard; Crane, David; Woof, Robert; Hebron, Stephen, Romantics and Revolutionaries: Regency portraits from the National Portrait Gallery, 2002, p. 155
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 84
Subjects & Themesback to top
Events of 1836back to top
Current affairsWilliam Lovett founds the Working Men's Association, the precursor to Chartism, with the aim to achieving equal social and political rights between men of all classes.
A reduction in stamp duty from 4d to 1d helps to keep unstamped newspapers off the street, and leads to wider circulation of legal newspapers.
The first railway line is built in London, connecting to Greenwich and operated by the London Greenwich Railway (LGR).
Art and scienceThe American poet and writer Ralph Waldo Emerson outlines his theory of transcendentalism in Nature, in which he argues for individualism above traditional authority, stressing the infinitude of the private self and the possibility of achieving an original relation to the universe.
The German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer publishes On the Will in Nature, a precursor to his famous The World as Will and Representation.
InternationalTexas declares its independence from Mexico following a series of battles, including those at the Alamo and Goliad. Sam Houston is the first president of Texas, serving both in 1836-38 and 1841-44.
The city of Adelaide is founded in Australia, at the mouth of the Torrens river, named in honour of Queen Adelaide, consort of William IV.
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