Edward Bird, R.A. (Wolverhampton 1772-1819 Bristol)
Edward Bird, R.A. (Wolverhampton 1772-1819 Bristol)

Queen Philippa supplicating King Edward to spare the lives of the six burghers of Calais

Details
Edward Bird, R.A. (Wolverhampton 1772-1819 Bristol)
Queen Philippa supplicating King Edward to spare the lives of the six burghers of Calais
oil on panel
24 x 35 ¾ in. (61 x 91 cm.)
Provenance
R. Bright of Abbots Leigh, and by descent to,
Samuel Bright, by 1869, and by descent to,
A. H. Bright, by 1910 (according to old labels on the reverse).
Exhibited
Royal Academy. London, 1814, no. 122 as 'Queen Phillippa [sic] supplicating King Edward to spare the lives of the six burghers of Calais, etc.'

Lot Essay

Edward Bird moved to Bristol in 1794 and helped form a group of artists which became known as the Bristol School. Bird had a marked influence on the work of the younger artist Francis Danby (1793-1861), who became a central figure within the group. After exhibiting the current work at the Royal Academy in 1815 Bird was subsequently elected a full member the following year. He proceeded to then only exhibit four more works before his death at the age of 47 in 1819.
Robert Bright of Bristol, and Abbot's Leigh, Somerset (1795-1869) was a prominent landowner and partner in the mercantile and shipping house of Gibbs & Bright of Bristol, Liverpool and London, trading in slaves and cotton. He was elected High Sheriff of Bristol in 1852. According to a label on the reverse of the painting some of the figures in the painting are modelled on known persons; the King is thought to be a self-portrait of Bird, the Queen a portrait of his wife, and the Black Prince modelled on Samuel Bright, possibly Robert Bright's son.
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