The Book, Cat, & Cat Book Lovers Almanac

of historical trivia regarding books, cats, and other animals. Actually this blog has evolved so that it is described better as a blog about cats in history and culture. And we take as a theme the advice of Aldous Huxley: If you want to be a writer, get some cats. Don't forget to see the archived articles linked at the bottom of the page.

February 13, 2017

February 13, 1869

The painter of this portrait was  Robert Braithwaite Martineau. (January 19, 1826 to February 13,

[He] ...was born in Gailford Street, London....[the] son of Philip Martineau, taxing-master to the court of chancery, and Elizabeth Frances, his wife, daughter of Robert Batty, M.D.... Martineau was educated at University College, London, and, being intended for the legal profession, was articled to a firm of solicitors. He, however, abandoned the law to follow his predilection for art, and became a pupil in the school of F. S. Cary ... In 1848 he was admitted a student at the Royal Academy, where he obtained a silver medal for a drawing from the antique. He then became a pupil of Mr. W. Holman Hunt, in the latter's studio at Chelsea. In 1852 he exhibited for the first time at the Royal Academy, sending 'Kit's Writing Lesson' (afterwards the property of Mr. C. Mudie), and subsequently 'Katharine and Petruchio' (1865), 'Picciola' (1856), 'The Allies' (1861), 'The Last Chapter' (1863), 'The Knight's Guerdon' (1864), and other small pictures; but his time was chiefly occupied on a large picture of his own invention, entitled 'The Last Day in the Old Home,' which was exhibited at the International Exhibition of 1862, and was the subject of much comment at the time. Afterwards he began an important picture, 'Christians and Christians,' but died of heart disease [before finishing it].... An exhibition of his pictures and drawings was held in the following summer at the Cosmopolitan Club, Charles Street, Berkeley Square. Martineau married in 1865 Maria, daughter of Henry Wheeler of Bolingbroke House, Wandsworth, by whom he left one son and two daughters.

Thus the Dictionary of National Biography, the 19th century forerunner of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, on Robert Braithwaite Martineau.

"A Girl with a Cat" is dated 1860.

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