HC Deb 15 May 1874 vol 219 c312

I wish, Sir, to mention a communication that has been received this afternoon on a subject of interest, upon which the hon. Member for Wexford has given Notice of a Question. I will read the letter I have received from Mr. George Scharf, Keeper and Secretary of the National Portrait Gallery. Writing to-day, he says— I am directed by Earl Stanhope, Chairman of the Trustees of this Gallery, to transmit, with a view of some announcement being made in the House of Commons, a copy of a letter from Mr. Albert Grant, munificently offering to present the Landseer Portrait of Sir Walter Scott to the nation. It was Lot 312 in the catalogue, and the price paid for it was £840. The picture is now, I hope, deposited in the Gallery. The letter enclosed is as follows— 41, Queen's Gate Terrace, South Kensington, W., May 12. Sir,—At the sale of the late Sir Edwin Landseer's works on Saturday last, the well-known portrait of Sir Walter Scott, painted by Sir Edwin Landseer when on a visit to Abbotsford, was included among the pictures to be sold, and was purchased by me. The object I had in acquiring it was to present it to the National Portrait Gallery on behalf of the nation, it being considered the most remarkable portrait of Sir Walter Scott extant. Accordingly, I hold the picture at the disposition of the trustees of the National Portrait Gallery, and on hearing from you of their acceptance of the same, will forward it in accordance with their directions.—I have the honour to be, Sir, your obedient servant, ALBERT GRANT. George Scharf, Esq., F.S.A., Secretary and Keeper, National Portrait Gallery.