Acton Smee Ayrton ('Statesmen, No. 34.')

© National Portrait Gallery, London

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Acton Smee Ayrton ('Statesmen, No. 34.')

by Carlo Pellegrini
chromolithograph, published in Vanity Fair 23 October 1869
14 1/8 in. x 9 1/2 in. (359 mm x 242 mm) paper size
Reference Collection
NPG D43402

Sitterback to top

  • Acton Smee Ayrton (1816-1886), Barrister and Liberal politician; MP for Tower Hamlets. Sitter in 7 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • Carlo Pellegrini (1839-1889), 'Ape'; caricaturist. Artist or producer associated with 490 portraits, Sitter in 5 portraits.

Related worksback to top

  • NPG 4713: Acton Smee Ayrton (source portrait)

Placesback to top

Events of 1869back to top

Current affairs

Gladstone introduces the Irish Church Disestablishment Act, which disestablishes the Church of Ireland, disassociating it from the state and repealing the paying of tithes to the Anglican Church of Ireland.
Girton College is founded in Cambridge by Barbara Bodichon and Emily Davies, the first residential college for women in England; women were granted full membership to the University in 1948.

Art and science

Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev invents the periodic table of elements, which arranges elements within a group in order of their atomic mass.
The British scientist Mary Somerville publishes her last book On Molecular and Microscopic Science.
Claude Monet and Pierre-Auguste Renoir paint together in the open air at La Grenouillère, developing the Impressionist style.

International

The Suez canal opens, linking the Red Sea and the Gulf of Suez with the Mediterranean Sea, and transforming trade routes between Europe and Asia as merchants no longer had to circumvent Africa. The canal was largely in British and French control until Egyptian nationalisation in 1956, which sparked off the international Suez crisis.
Serialisation of Leo Tolstoy's epic novel of Russian society during the Napoleonic wars, War and Peace finishes.

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