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Western art

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Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema

England, Netherlands

08 Jan 1836 - 28 Jun 1912




Media category


Materials used

oil on canvas


54.6 x 66.7 cm sight; 73.5 x 85.8 x 6.0 cm frame

Signature & date

Signed and dated l.l., brown paint "L Alma-Tadema op CXLVI".


Gift of Sir Herbert Thompson 1920

Accession number


Artist information

Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema

Works in the collection


Shown in 13 exhibitions

Exhibition history


Pilgeram and Lefevre, 1875-circa 1882, London/England, Commissioned by Pilgeram and Lefevre, sold circa 1882 to Sir Henry Thompson.

Sir Henry Thompson, circa 1882-1904, London/England, Surgeon and pupil of Alma-Tadema. Father of Sir Herbert Thompson.

Sir Herbert Thompson, 1904-1920, London/England, Gift of Sir Herbert Thompson 1920. An Egyptologist, Sir Thompson donated the painting to the AGNSW after members of his cousin's family (Mrs Montague Grover, Sydney) admired it.

Referenced in 48 publications


Charles Baile de Laperriere (Editor), The Royal Scottish Academy exhibitors, 1826–1990: a dictionary of artists and their work in the annual exhibitions of the Royal Scottish Academy, Wiltshire, 1991, vol 1, p 41.

R J Barrow, Lawrence Alma-Tadema, London, 2001, pp 116, 169.

Atkinson J Beavington, Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, ‘Contemporary Art – Poetic and Positive: Rossetti and Tadema – Linnell and Lawson’, Edinburgh, Mar 1883, pp 392–411: p 403.

Richard Beresford, Pre-Raphaelites and Olympians, selected works of Victorian art from the John and Julie Schaeffer and the Art Gallery of New South Wales collections, Sydney, 2001, unnumbered, p 49, col illus p 49.

Henry Blackburn (Editor), Academy notes, 1876, London, 1876, p 65.

Harold Bloom, Major literary characters: Cleopatra, New York, circa 1990, cover illus.

Rudolf Dircks, Art Journal, ‘The Art Annual: the later works of Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema’, London, Dec 1910, p 28.

Georg Ebers, Westermanns Illustrierte Deutsche Monatschefte für das Gesamte Geistige Leben der Gegenwart, ‘Lourens Alma Tadema’, Germany, Oct 1885-Nov 1885, Oct 1885, pp 1–16, Nov 1885, pp 177–96: p 187.

Renée Free and Peter Laverty, Victorian Olympians, Sydney, 1975, pp 14–15, no 4, illus p 53.

Renée Free, Art Gallery of New South Wales catalogue of British paintings, Sydney, 1987, p 7, illus p 7.

Renée Free, Art and Australia, vol 10, no 1, 'European Collection', Sydney, Jul 1972, p 67, illus p 72.

Algernon Graves, The Royal Academy of Arts: a complete dictionary of contributors and their work from its foundation in 1769 to 1904, London, 1905-1906, vol 1, 1905, p 28.

Jasper Griffin, The Australian Review of Books, 'Tales of the city', Sydney, Jul 1998, pp 25–26: p 25, col illus p 25.

Peter Haynes (Compilator), Famous people: a selective who's who from works in the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 1981, p 3, illus p 3.

Alison Inglis, Queens & sirens: archaeology in 19th century art and design, 'The Past is not a Foreign Country', Geelong, 1998, pp 5, 9, no 2, illus p 9, fig 3.

Anne Kirker and Peter Tomory, British painting 1800–1990 in Australian and New Zealand public collections, Sydney, 1997, p 44, no 20.

Michelle Lovric, Cleopatra's face: fatal beauty, London, 2001, p 49, col illus p 49.

Wilfred Meynell, Magazine of Art, ‘Our living artists – Laurens Alma-Tadema, RA’, London, 1879, pp 193–97: p 197.

Wilfred Meynell (Editor), Some modern artists and their work, London, 1883, pp 92–93.

Ursula Prunster., Orientalism – Delacroix to Klee, Catalogue entry, Sydney, 1997-1998, p 95, no 36, col illus p 95.

Percy Standing, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, OM, RA, London, 1905, pp 57, 73–74. Not pp 98–9 which refer to ‘his second study from life of Cleopatra’ meaning ‘Anthony and Cleopatra’.

Percy Standing, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, OM, RA, London, 1905, pp 57, 73–74. Not pp 98–9 which refer to ‘his second study from life of Cleopatra’ meaning ‘Anthony and Cleopatra’.

Vern Swanson, The biography and catalogue raisonné of the paintings of Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, London, 1990, p 182, no 184, illus p 360.

Vern Swanson, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema: the painter of the Victorian vision of the ancient world, London, 1977, p 137. Listed as no CXLVI, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Melbourne (sic).

Helen Zimmern, The Art Annual: L Alma Tadema Royal Academician: his life and work, London, 1886, p 19.

Helen Zimmern, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, London, 1902, p 70. As collection of Sir Henry Thompson.

Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, Amsterdam, 1996-1997, p 91. Essay by Diane Sahko Macleod.

The exhibition of the Royal Scottish Academy of painting, sculpture and architecture, MDCCCLXXV, the forty-ninth, Edinburgh, 1875, p 19, no 224.

Exposition générale des beaux-arts 1875: catalogue explicatif, Brussels, 1875, p 24, no 9.

Times, ‘Exhibition of the Royal Academy: first notice’, London, 29 Apr 1876, p 14.

Athenaeum, ‘The Royal Academy (first notice)’, London, 29 Apr 1876, pp 600–03: p 603.

Athenaeum, ‘The Royal Academy (third notice)’, London, 13 May 1876, pp 669–72: p 672.

Illustrated London News, ‘Royal Academy exhibition’, London, 29 Apr 1876, pp 418–19: p 419.

British painters of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, London, circa 1880, p 139.

The Grosvenor Gallery: winter exhibition, London, 1882-1883, p 22, no 129.

Fair Women, London, 1894, p 34, no 142. This is a small catalogue approx 8 inches square with 144 pp and no illustrations.

Athenaeum, ‘The Grafton Galleries (second and concluding notice)’, London, 14 Jul 1894, pp 70–71: p 71.

Spring exhibition, London, 1908, p 44, no 400.

Forty-third autumn exhibition of modern art, Liverpool, 1913, p 53, no 1040.

Exhibition of works by the late Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, RA, OM, London, 1913, p 20, no 47.

Daily Telegraph, ‘New pictures at the Art Gallery’, Sydney, 26 Apr 1921, p 7.

Sydney Morning Herald, ‘The Art Gallery: an Alma-Tadema portrait’, Sydney, 26 Apr 1921, p 7.

Sydney Mail, ‘Current topics: Cleopatra’, Sydney, 04 May 1921, p 6, illus p 6.

National Art Gallery of New South Wales (annual report of the trustees for the year 1921), Sydney, 1922, p 2.

National Art Gallery of NSW illustrated catalogue, Sydney, 1924, p 50, no 134.

Cléopâtre dans le miroir de l'art occidental, Geneva, 2004, col illus p 358, fig 1. Text reference in caption only.

Art Gallery of New South Wales annual report 1999, Sydney, 1999, p 56. Loan.

The exhibition of the Royal Academy of Arts … the one hundred and eighth, London, 1876, p 50, no 1282. The copy of this catalogue with interleaved illustrations in the Royal Academy library erroneously includes a print of the ‘Meeting of Anthony and Cleopatra’ of 1883 (Swanson, no 283).