The Strand Magazine/Volume 1/Issue 1/Portraits of Celebrities at Different Times of Their Lives
Portraits of Celebrities at different times of their Lives.
HE novel portrait gallery which is here commenced, and in which it is our purpose to give portraits, month by month, of the most eminent men and women of the day at different times of life, cannot be more fitly opened than with those of the great poet whose name has been for more than fifty years the glory of our literature. Portraits of Lord Tennyson in youth are rare; but Lord Tennyson himself has had the kindness to assist us. "Mayall, of Regent-street," he writes, "has done the best photograph, and Cameron, of 70, Mortimer-street, has a photograph, as a young man, from a portrait by Lawrence." These are the two here reproduced. Both have a special interest, besides the interest of comparison which belongs to all the series: the first, as a portrait of the poet, by one of the best artists of that day, at an age when his first volume—tiny, but of dazzling promise—had just been given to the world; and the second, as that which Lord Tennyson regards as the best portrait of himself in later life.
E are indebted to the kindness of Professor Blackie for three portraits of himself at widely different ages. Three-quarters of a century is so vast a span of human life, that the resemblance between the charming little boy of five in frills and the grey Professor of eighty, who might be his great-grandfather, though distinctly traceable, may not at first be visible to all. At five years old John Stuart Blackie was, we may assume, most interested in tops and pop-guns; at forty-five he was a University Professor, and just returning from his tour to Athens, which was the origin of his well-known advocacy of the study of modern Greek; at eighty he was—as he still is, and as we trust he may long be—at once the most learned and the most popular of living Scotchmen.
THE REV. C. H. SPURGEON,
OST men born to be great preachers have, at the age of twenty-one, not yet attempted their first sermon. Four years before that age Mr. Spurgeon. "the boy preacher," was speaking every Sunday to a crowd which overflowed the chapel doors and mobbed the very windows. Before 1855—the date of our first portrait—he had been called to London, and was drawing such a throng to the chapel in New Park-street, that the building had speedily to be enlarged, That year was also memorable for another reason; in January Mr. Spurgeon issued the first sermon of the unexampled series which was to run without an interruption, week by week, for five-and-thirty years. Long before the date of our second portrait, the New Park-street chapel, in spite of its enlargement, had become too small to hold the congregation. The Metropolitan Tabernacle was erected, and from that time down to this has been crowded every Sunday to the doors.
For leave to reproduce the portraits above given, our thanks are due alike to Mr. Spurgeon, and to Messrs. Passmore & Alabaster, to whom the copyright belongs.
MISS ELLEN TERRY.
HERE is an old Wives' saying, that pretty children often grow up plain, and vice versâ; but, as our readers may determine for themselves, Miss Ellen Terry has been always charming. And she has always been an actress. At the age of eight, as our first portrait shows her, she was playing as the child Mamillius in the "The Winter's Tale," with Charles Kean's company, at the Princess's, and was already giving promise of the mingled power and charm which perhaps have never been more fully manifest than in the part of Lucy Ashton, which all London is now crowding the Lyceum to see.
For all the photographs here reproduced we have to thank the kindness of Miss Terry.
From a Photo. by] AGE 29. [Messrs. Walker & SonsFrom a Photo. by] AGE 30. [Messrs. Walker & Sons
From a] AGE 29.[Photograph From a Photograph by]AGE 42 [Mr. S. A. Walker
R. IRVING wearing a moustache presents an unfamiliar aspect; but such was his appearance when, in 1867, he had just made his great success in "Hunted Down," at Manchester. The year after, Mr. Irving deprived himself of his moustache in order to play Dorincourt in "The Belle's Stratagem," and appeared as in our second portrait—which, however, he assures us, is a shade too plump to be his accurate presentment. Ten years later, when Mr. Irving was preparing to amaze the world as Hamlet, at the Lyceum, his features had assumed the well-known aspect which they wear in our third portrait, and which is still more visible in the last of the series, which has been selected as one of Mr. Irving's favourites among the stock of photographs which he has very kindly placed at our disposal
ALGERNON C SWINBURNE. BORN 1837
T has been said that every poet destined to become famous has written a great poem before five-and-twenty. Mr. Swinburne is, however, an exception to this rule. He was seven-and-twenty when, 1864, he published "Atalanta in Calydon," his first great work, and the finest imitation of a Greek play ever written. Two years later, the first series of "Poems and Ballads" proved conclusively that the new singer who had arisen must be classed with Shelley at the head of all the lyric bards of England. Mr. Swinburne's appearance at that time is given in the first of our two portraits, which is said by those who knew him to be an admirable likeness.
Nearly a quarter of a century has since elapsed, and it is interesting to notice how the course of years, which has failed to tame the fiery vigour of his verse, has wrought the younger aspect of the poet into the older and still finer one.
SIR JOHN LUBBOCK, BART. Born 1834.
IR JOHN LUBBOCK, at nineteen, was already showing, in his father's bank in Lombard-street, the remarkable capacity for business which he combines beyond example with pre-eminence in literature and science. At twenty-eight, the age at which our second portrait represents him, he was already meditating his great work on "Prehistoric Times"—a book which has been translated into all the leading languages, and to which the writer chiefly owes his fame. Sir John Lubbock's mind, as is well known, is of the enviable kind which can find its interests alike in the great and in the little, in the past and in the present—which can pass from the wigwam of a prehistoric savage to the London of to-day, and turn with equal gusto from canoes to County Councils, and from banks to bees.
Our portraits are reproduced from photographs kindly lent by Sir John Lubbock for the purpose.
H. RIDER HAGGARD. Born 1856.
T is not often possible to present a portrait of a well-known writer taken in his nursery days; but in the case of Mr. Rider Haggard, he has obligingly enabled us to do so, as well as to reproduce a portrait of himself when, as a boy of seven, he was probably about to quit the nursery for the schoolroom. The third portrait of the series represents him when, at nineteen, as secretary to Sir Henry Bulwer, he was about to pay a lengthy visit to Natal—there to acquire the thorough familiarity with the scenery and the people of South Africa which he was afterwards to turn to excellent account, especially in "Jess." Our final portrait, which is taken from a recent photograph, represents him as he is at present, when he has proved himself the best romantic writer of the day.