George Abbott exhibited a ‘Bronze Cabinet Bust of the Duke of Wellington’ at the Royal Academy in 1842 (catalogue number 1311) and a ‘Statue of the Duke of Wellington’ at the same venue in the following year (catalogue number 1378). However, this later statuette, originally modelled by Abbott in 1852, is thought to be a copy by Abbott of another artist’s work.
In ‘Notes by the Way’ (1909; a publication to commemorate 60 years since ‘Notes and Queries’ was first published) the author reports that William John Thomas (founder and first editor of ‘Notes and Queries’) ‘noticed a “very characteristic statuette of ‘The Duke of Wellington in the House of Lords’” as an admirable memorial of him modelled by Mr. George Abbott from a sketch by Alfred Crowquill, and executed in Parian.’
Illustrator and writer Alfred Henry Forrester (pseudonym Alfred Crowquill) was a skilled modeller and produced a statue of Wellington in 1851, which he presented to Queen Victoria two weeks before Wellington’s death. In c.1862, Abbott’s statuette after Crowquill was reproduced by the firm of W. T. Copeland in Parian, a type of bisque porcelain designed to imitate marble.
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