1 of 37 portraits by James Posselwhite
by James Posselwhite, after Unknown artist
stipple engraving, 19th century
10 in. x 7 1/2 in. (255 mm x 190 mm) plate size; 15 in. x 12 in. (382 mm x 304 mm) paper size
Given by E.C. Atherton Byrom, 1896
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Current affairsWidespread food riots after poor harvests of 1798-9. Theorist, Thomas Malthus, controversially argues that poverty and food shortages are an inevitable consequence of population growth, challenging assumptions that populousness was a sign of national prosperity and power. His thesis contributed forcefully to the debate over the existing Poor Law.
Art and scienceWilliam Wordsworth publishes his Preface to the Lyrical Ballads; a retrospective explanation of his experimental poems written with Samuel Taylor Coleridge. It becomes one of the best-known manifestos of Romantic literature.
InternationalLord Castlereagh, Chief Secretary for Ireland, is the main architect of the Act of Union under which Ireland is merged with Great Britain and the Irish parliament is abolished.
British troops support successful uprising by Maltese against the French.
Napoleon is victorious against Austrians at Marengo and reconquers Italy.
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