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  • HAYDON, Benjamin Robert
    1786-1846






    Painter



  • Benjamin Robert Haydon was a British historical painter. Like Barry, Haydon attempted to be a pure history painter in the Grand Style adumbrated by Reynolds in his Discourses. His life was a tragi-comedy of high endeavour and high art which ended in imprisonment for debt, and suicide. His tireless propaganda forced the Government and nobility to accept the novel idea that the patronage of the arts was socially desirable, and he was partly responsible for the Government's purchase of the Elgin Marbles in 1816.

    There are pictures in Exeter (Marcus Curtius, 1842), London (NPG, Tate) and Yale (CBA), but his best memorial is his Autobiography and Memoirs (first published 1853).

  • Source: The Penguin Dictionary of Art and Artists (Penguin Reference Books)

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