The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

Advanced Collection search

Mad, Bad and Dangerous: The Cult of Lord Byron

Lord Byron
by Richard Westall
NPG 4243

Past exhibition archive
20 November 2002 - 16 February 2003

Porter Gallery

Admission Free

A reinterpretation for a new generation, of the continuing fascination of Lord Byron (1788-1824).

Bringing together over 100 works including paintings, photographs, letters, literary manuscripts, memorabilia and examples of Byronic dress, this exhibition explores how Byron's literary fame and social notoriety was fuelled by the many visual representations of the poet. It also examines his influence on leading figures of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries including Oscar Wilde, T.E. Lawrence and W.H Auden as well as the more recent stars of popular culture such as James Dean, Rudolf Valentino and Mick Jagger.


A new biography of Byron by Fiona McCarthy is available, priced £25 hardback.


Tudor and Elizabethan matching pairs

Test your memory by playing our matching pairs game. Three levels of difficulty make it fun for the whole family.

Test your skill

Regency familiar faces

Rearrange tiles to uncover sitters from the Gallery's Collection by playing our puzzle game.

Play today

Who do you think you were?

Answer a few lifestyle questions about the Elizabethan period and discover your inner Elizabethan!

Start now