The-waterloo-banquet
Antique Prints

Since 1763 the name 'Russborough' has been synonymous with collecting and dealing in fine art. In the closing decades of the last century the historic town of Port Hope has become home to Lord Russborough's Annex, which specialises in an individual mix of antique maps, paintings and prints.

While Lord Russborough's Annex features a great many works of museum calibre, we also offer a wonderful selection of prints priced at under $100.

An extract of our prints currently available:

The Waterloo Banquet

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The Waterloo Banquet

THE WATERLOO BANQUET AT APSLEY HOUSE  18 JUNE 1836

William Greatbach after William Salter. Published London F.G. Moon 18 June 1846 printed by McQueen.
SCARCE original copper engraving on wove paper. Period flawed glass glazing. Period mahogany wood and gilt liner.
Image: 26 1/2 x 43 7/8" includung letters (67.3 x 111.5 cm.)   Frame 35 1/2 x 54"

Together with original period lithographed numbered Key naming the participants with their principal decorations. Glazed, within oak wood frame  15 1/2 x 24"

Ref. 140 KG1/DNNN/e.andg> RDNN     PRICE CODE G

The image is dedicated to the British Nation by the publisher Sir Francis Moon, who styled himself as Her Majesty's printseller in ordinary and to His Royal Highness Prince Albert. Moon had his London establishment at 10 Threadneedle Street. He is portrayed as number 87 in the key to the engraving.

William Salter 1804-1875 was educated in Honiton, Devon. He studied at James Northcote’s studio from 1822. Five years later he went on a 'Grand Tour' to Florence, Italy. Unlike other grand tourer’s, Salter took up employment as a professor at the Academy of Florence where he taught History Painting until 1833 when he returned to England.

Below this engraving, he has styled himself as “Professor of the first class of historical painting in the Academy of Florence. Academician and Corresponding Member of the Ducal Academy of the Fine Arts of Partino"

The story is, that the artist William Salter was on his horse in Hyde Park on June 18th., when he happened to hear and then see the (presumably the 20th.) banquet in progress at the Duke of Wellington's residence at Hyde Park corner, Number 1 London. He was so intrigued by the spectacle that he approached his patron with a proposal for a painting to capture the scene. His patron and pupil Lady Berghersh, consented to approach the Duke with the proposal. The Duke was immediately against the idea as he considered Salter's immaturity would not be up to the complexity of the painting Salter was proposing, as he was virtually unknown as an artist in England at the time. Lady Berghersh was the Duke's niece (many say his favourite). She and the Duke were close and kept up a correspondence for many years. The Duke, however, was persuaded through her good offices and he gave Salter access to the 90 foot long room and ornaments so that he could capture their likenesses.

Salter proved himself worthy of the task however and painted scores of military figures as preparation for what turned out to be his ‘grande œuvre,’ The Waterloo Banquet painting. Many of these original individual portraits are now in the National Portrait Gallery, London. He worked on this painting for five years at his studio in Pall Mall, persevering to obtain a sitting from the invitees. Each of the people in the painting was reported as a good likeness.  'The Iron Duke' was suitably impressed.

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Waterloo Banquet det 7

The King is sitting at Wellington's right as the Duke proposes a toast. The idea of choosing this moment is not by chance. Salter had a problem of composition as he had to deliver a good likeness of over eighty people. As a banquet usually would result in half of the people facing away from a viewer, he chose this moment so that the celebrants could more naturally be displayed facing to the side as they sat in conversational groups.

Interestingly, the foreground is filled with a casual clutter of military hats, swords and accoutrements, on the floor and side table, perhaps common for such an event when Number 1 Dress was required. The table has already been cleared of cutlery and condiments as the guests settle for the remainder of the evening, following Wellington’s toast. The candelabra and magnificent silver-gilt Baixela da Victoria (‘the victory table service’) are quite visible, along with part of Wellington’s important art collection, much of it the gift of countries he had liberated from the scourge of Napoleon.The most noticeable example is the portrait of Charles I on horseback after Van Dyck, but also identifiable is Velazquez’s Water Seller.The Baixela da Victoria is an elaborate table center-peice made between 1813-16 created from melted coinage and given as a Portuguese diplomatic gift in appreciation to Wellington in 1816.

Tickets were sold to people who wanted to see the monumental painting, a defining tableau of British history, when it was exhibited in 1841.The painting was engraved by William Greatbach and was very popular when it was published by F.G.Moon in 1846.

Not surprisingly, as the heroes of Waterloo were immortalized in paint, the artist (number 86 in the key to the engraving) decided to immortalize himself among them. He stands in the doorway to the banqueting hall known as The Waterloo Gallery, along with his patroness (number 83 in the key to the engraving) and Lady Fitz-roy Somerset (85). Eighty-one guests (plus six others portrayed) are in attendance around the table at the 21st. annual anniversary of the battle in 1836. In the intervening ten years it took Salter to paint their portraits and Greatbach to engrave their likenesses, 23 had died by the date of publication of this engraving. 

It was proposed in 1852 to purchase the painting from the artist by public subscription. However, this failed to achieve its goal probably due to the Duke's death in September 1852. The painting remained unsold and passed down to Salter's heirs. Fittingly, the painting is now displayed at Apsley House. The tradition of holding a banquet of the anniversary of the day of the battle was revived in 2015 by the 9th. Duke.

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William Greatbach 1802 - ca 1885, was an associated engraver of the National Gallery. He mainly engraved portraits, historical and sentimental subjects after his contemporaries.

Priscilla Anne Fane (née Wellesley-Pole), Countess of Westmorland (1793 -18 February 1879), styled Lady Burghersh between 1811 and 1841, was a British linguist and artist.
Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington, was her uncle. Priscilla was a great favourite with her uncle who had a high opinion of her political judgement. She received art lessons from Salter and was his indulgent patron.

 This scarce and exceptionally fine image,of which this is currently the only copy for sale in Canada, would look most befitting in the dining-room or study wall of a titled or military gentleman or in any private or institutional military print collection.

Waterloo banquet key

Sold together with its original period lithographed numbered Key naming the participants with their principal decorations. glazed, within oakwood frame  15 1/2 x 24"

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