• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 1986

    Important Old Master Paintings Part I And Part II

    15 April 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 209

    Benjamin Marshall Seagrave, Leicestershire 1767-1835 London

    Pastime, a bay filly, led by one of her trainers, with a groom in attendance

    Price Realised  


    Benjamin Marshall Seagrave, Leicestershire 1767-1835 London
    Pastime, a bay filly, led by one of her trainers, with a groom in attendance
    signed and inscribed 'PASTIME/B Marshall Pt' (lower right)
    oil on canvas
    28 x 36 in. 71.1 x 91.4 cm.
    Painted circa 1822.

    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Pastime, a bay filly foaled in 1822, bred by the Duke of Rutland, was by Partisan out of Quadrille, by Selim. In 1825 Pastime ran second to General Grosvenor's Wings in her first race - the Oaks at Epsom on May 20th - beating the Duke of Grafton's Totine. It was considered a great race as Wings only beat Pastime, who was lame at the time, by a neck. On June 21st she won the Foal Stakes at Winchester beating Mr. Shard's Hougomont. She started for the St. Leger at Doncaster on September 20th but was not placed. In 1826, Pastime, ran third for the Claret Stakes at the Newmarket Craven Meeting, beaten by Mr. Wyndham's Chateau Margaux and Lord Exeter's Enamel in second. Later the property of Lord Wharncliffe, Pastime beat Colonel Udny's Tarandus at the Second October Meeting. On November 1st, at the Houghton Meeting, Pastime beat Lord Exeter's Enamel. The following year at the First Spring Meeting on May 1st, Pastime won a Sweepstakes for four-year-olds, beating by a length the Duke of Rutland's Adeliza. The same year she won the Trial Stakes in October followed by winning the First Class of the Oatlands Sakes at the Second October Meeting. She also came in second at the Houghton Meeting, beaten by Colonel Wilson's Lamplighter. In 1828, Pastime belonged to Lord Sefton and won the Second Class of a Handicap Sweepstakes on May 5th. At the sale of Lord Sefton's Stutd, at Tattersall's, June 14th, 1830, Pastime, covered by Emilius, was purchased by Sir Mark Wood at 470 guineas.

    The Sporting Magazine writes of Pastime (vol. VII, no. XXXIX, July, 1833, p. 146.):
    'Pastime, from her pedigree, performances, and almost from her name, ought to have adorned our pages some years ago; but the rapid changes she has had in passing from the hands of one to another, and other causes, have prevented her appearance until the present moment. It is true her exploits on the Turf are getting out of memory; but with some they are too good ever to be forgotten, and her fame as a brood-mare is all to come, as none of her produce have hitherto appeared at the post: from her fine powers, however, her exquisite symmetry, and purity of blood, there is little doubt of her shining in the stud, as she did on the course.' In fact, she did not have any winners amongst her six foals.

    She was painted the first year of her being turned out of training by Lambert Marshall (fig. 1). She is shown in the company of another mare to attest to the fact that she had a hatred of being by herself and always needed the company of other animals.

    Marshall had, among painters, a unique position in the racing world. He himself frequently wrote in The Sporting Magazine, and no artist could rival his understanding of, and sympathy for, the servants and trainers on whom the racing confraternity depended. He was, however, first and foremost, a horse painter par excellence, and it was his mastery of this genre that secured him such patrons as Lord Scarbrough and the Duke of Rutland.

    Ellis & Smith exhibited the present work at Grosvenor House Antiques Fair in London, circa 1950, a photograph of which is shown in figure 2.


    Sir Walter Gilbey; Christie's, London, 11 June 1915, lot 336, (£84 to Dean).
    The Property of a Lady of Title; Sotheby's, London, 27 July 1949, lot 102 (£440 to Ellis & Smith).
    with Ellis & Smith, London.
    with Frost & Reed, London.

    Pre-Lot Text



    A. Noakes, Ben Marshall, Leigh-on-Sea, 1978, p. 56, 64 & 74, no. 227.


    Pasadena, The Pasadena Art Museum, English Sporting Art, 11 November - 11 December 1955.
    Fullerton, California, The Muckenthaler Cultural Center, The Equestrian in Art, 7-30 September 1984.