Sir Algernon Edward West (1832-1921) Chairman of the Board of Inland Revenue: “Algy”

Sir Leslie Matthew ("Spy") Ward (1851 - 1922)

Colour lithograph

13 August 1892
  • About the work

    Sir Algernon Edward West, who resigned as Chairman of the Board of Inland Revenue in 1892, was caricatured in 'Vanity Fair' that year. The accompanying text explained that West’s Christian name was shortened to ‘Algy’ by members of the Civil Service, a term ‘not necessarily expressive of… affection.’

  • About the artist
    Leslie Ward was born into a family of painters. His mother and father were historical genre painters Edward Matthew Ward and Henrietta Ward. He was educated at Eton and then entered the studio of architect Sydney Smirke. However, he abandoned his architectural training to become apprenticed to W. P. Frith. In 1873 J. E. Millais sent some of his drawings to Thomas Gibson Bowles, founder and owner of ‘Vanity Fair’. Bowles immediately hired Ward, whose first ‘Vanity Fair’ caricature appeared in 1873 under the ‘nom de crayon’ Spy. Ward also painted portraits and made architectural drawings, exhibiting his work at the Royal Academy and Grosvenor Gallery. He was knighted in 1918. Ward died in 1922 and was buried at Kensal Green Cemetery, London.
  • Explore
    West, Sir Algernon Edward
    Materials & Techniques
    lithograph, colour lithograph
  • Details
    Sir Algernon Edward West (1832-1921) Chairman of the Board of Inland Revenue: “Algy”
    13 August 1892
    Colour lithograph
    height: 37.20 cm, width: 22.20 cm
    Transferred from HM Revenue and Customs, December 2012
    Inland Revenue, Somerset House; transferred to GAC 2012
    GAC number