Portrait bust of Matthew Arnold (1822–1888).



William Tyler, R.A. (active 1878–1893).


Portrait bust of Matthew Arnold (1822–1888).


[ca. 1889]


Terracotta patinated plaster bust, 30 x 24 in.

Provenance: Lord Coleridge [John Duke Coleridge].

Lord Coleridge was Matthew Arnold’s “most loyal [and] enduring of any of his friends” (Honan). He unveiled another bust of Arnold, by Bruce Joy, in Poets’ Corner in Westminster Abbey. Coleridge and Arnold first met as undergraduates at Balliol College, Oxford, and remained lifelong friends, regularly seeing and corresponding with one another.

The finished marble bust (current location unknown) was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1889. Another plaster version is in the art collection of Balliol College, not definitively known to be, but almost certainly, the gift of Lord Coleridge.

Matthew Arnold was my great-great-grandfather. My grandfather, Arnold Whitridge (a one-time Grolier Club member) acquired and collected books once owned by his grandfather, Matthew Arnold, which had been sold and dispersed by Arnold’s family when he died. I am the current caretaker of that collection, now presided over by this bust.


Thomas D. Whitridge