Hyde Park, London, England
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A watercolour showing the funeral procession of the Duke of Wellington passing Apsley House before proceeding along Piccadilly. SIgned and dated bottom right: L Haghe / 1854.
The Duke - a national hero due to his victory over Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo, and later Prime Minister - died on 14 September 1852 at the age of 83, and his funeral procession, held over two months later, was huge public event, watched by over a million people. Queen Victoria watched the cortege pass from St James's Palace and recorded in her Journal 'Dearest Albert had chosen all the music & taken, as he did with the whole, - great trouble about it...We saw admirably the Cavalry, Albert, in his carriage, & the car, in all its solumn melancholy splendour. The waving canopy, - the large, & entirely covered horses, as they came down the crowded street...made an indescribable impression upon me'. The Duke had been a trusted advisor to Victoria and Albert, who named their third son after him. They commissioned three watercolours from Haghe relating to the Duke's funeral (see RCINs 916696 and 916698); prints of the same subjects, though with some variations to those owned by the Queen, were published in April 1853.
This watercolour was originally mounted in View Album VI. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert compiled nine View Albums during their marriage. These albums contained watercolours and drawings documenting their life together and were arranged in chronological order. The albums were dismantled in the early twentieth century and rebound in new volumes with additional items, but a written record of their original contents and arrangement still exists.
Descriptive Medium: 'Pencil, watercolour and bodycolour with gum arabic', 'bodycolour, gum', 'watercolour painting'