Bust of Admiral Edward Pellew, later First Viscount Exmouth (1757 - 1833)
Bertel Thorvaldsen, Danish (active Rome and Copenhagen) 1770 - 1844
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Commander of the British fleet in the Mediterranean, Admiral Pellew became celebrated throughout Europe in 1816 when he attacked the North African city of Algiers, forcing the ruler there to release a large number of Christians held as slaves. The sculptor has adopted the ancient, square-based form of bust, and included such features as battle scars and a hereditary divot from Pellew’s right ear, thereby combining physiognomic accuracy with a style associated with famous figures from the distant past. Pellew may have been the first of many prominent Britons to sit for Thorvaldsen on their visits to Rome.
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