James Bruce ('An Abyssinian Breakfast')

© National Portrait Gallery, London

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James Bruce ('An Abyssinian Breakfast')

by Isaac Cruikshank, published by William Holland
hand-coloured etching, published 3 March 1791
11 1/8 in. x 14 1/4 in. (281 mm x 362 mm) paper size
Purchased, 2016
Reference Collection
NPG D47441

Sitterback to top

  • James Bruce (1730-1794), Explorer. Sitter associated with 5 portraits.

Artistsback to top

  • Isaac Cruikshank (1764-1811), Artist. Artist or producer associated with 18 portraits.
  • William Holland (active 1782-1802), Book and printseller. Artist or producer associated with 12 portraits.

Events of 1791back to top

Current affairs

Thomas Paine publishes his inflammatory and widely read Rights of Man in response to Edmund Burke's Reflections on the Revolution in France of the previous year. The work advocates radical revolution and prompts a trial for seditious libel that takes place in his absence.
The Catholic Relief Act is passed, repealing the most severe penal laws.

Art and science

Robert Burns publishes Tam O'Shanter, combining the Scottish vernacular with the formal traditions of classical English poetry and exploring radical ideas of freedom.
The Observer newspaper is founded.
The Ordnance Survey is set up to prepare detailed maps of the country.

International

Mozart composes The Magic Flute.
The Declaration of the Rights of Man establishes liberal freedoms in France
The French Constitution is passed by the National Assembly.
Louis XVI flees Paris with his family but is captured at Varennes.
William Pitt declares Britain will remain neutral in any war against France.

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