© reserved; collection National Portrait Gallery, London
by Robert Duckworth Greenham
oil on board, 1944
20 in. x 16 in. (510 mm x 408 mm)
In the 1930s and 1940s Greenham made a series of portraits of film stars, including Greta Garbo and Jessie Matthews, inspired by cinema stills. The source here was a photograph for Vogue by Beaton, of Hunt as Mrs Cheveley in An Ideal Husband (1943).
London is hit by the V1 Flying Bomb. This weapon, developed by the German Luftwaffe and colloquially known as the 'Buzz Bomb', or 'Doodlebug', was the first guided missile and was used for attacks on targets in England and Belgium.
Art and science
Laurence Olivier's epic film version of Henry V
is released. Olivier directed and starred in the film, which was partly funded by the British government in recognition of its morale-boosting patriotic appeal. The cast included service men as Henry's army.
France is liberated from German-occupation following the Battle for Normandy. Operation Overlord, the Allied invasion of occupied-France led by Field Marshall Montgomery, was the largest seaborne invasion in history, involving almost three million soldiers crossing the channel from England to France. Troops landed on the 6th June (D-Day), and Paris was liberated in late August.