§ MR. COLLINS
asked Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Whether it is true that two paintings by the late David Roberts, R.A. (one of them said to be his masterpiece) were recently offered by Mrs. Bunning, widow of the late City Architect, to the Trustees of the National Gallery; whether he is aware that the offer has been declined; and, if he will inform the House of the grounds of refusal to accept them?
§ THE CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER,
in reply, said, it was true that two paintings by the late David Roberts, R.A., were received at the National 593 Gallery under the will of the late Mr. Bunning. It was also true that they were not accepted by the Trustees. The ground upon which the pictures were declined was, he was informed, that after careful examination they did not appear to the Trustees to be of sufficient excellence as compared with many other works of Mr. Roberts to represent fairly that distinguished painter in the national collection. It required a considerable exercise of care on the part of the Trustees in order to secure that a painter should be properly represented, and the National Gallery already possessed two very beautiful works of Mr. Roberts.