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Val Prinsep
1838 -1904
(a Rossetti-style pose)


Ernest Gambart

Ernest Gambart
1814 - 1902









SwinburneA C Swinburne
1837 - 1909

by Rossetti)

Short Biographies of Characters associated with the Windows

Val Prinsep | Ernest Gambart | Algernon Swinburne

Valentine Cameron Prinsep (Calcutta 14 February 1838 – 11 November 1904 London) was a British painter of the Pre-Raphaelite school. He is often known as Val Prinsep. He appears as a model for one of the characters in Rossetti's window of the Parable of the Tenents of the Vineyard in the East Window.

The son of an Indian civil servant, Prinsep was educated in England, where his remarkable circle of family friends included Rossetti, Ruskin, Carlyle, Gladstone, Disraeli, Halle and Darwin.

Prinsep was one of those who assisted Rossetti in the fresco decorations of the Oxford Union in 1857. He travelled to Italy in the company of Burne-Jones in 1859-60, and on his return to London became quite successful. In 1878 he was elected ARA, and a fortuitous marriage in 1884 (to Florence Leyland, daughter of a rich ship-owner from Liverpool) made him financially independent.

Prinsep produced several pictures in the Pre-Raphaelite style, including The Queen was in her Parlour, Eating Bread and Honey and the rather classical At the Golden Gate, also Jane Shore (1865). With a Pre-Raphaelite minuteness of detail, classical drapery and an Eastern subject is his well-known The Death of Cleopatra (1870). Other Eastern subjects include The Taj Mahal (1877) and the remarkable Orientalist painting The Fisherman and the Jinn (1895), reminiscent of Frederick Goodall. Top

Jean Joseph Ernest Theodore Gambart (October 12, 1814 – April 12, 1902) was a Belgian-born English art publisher and dealer who dominated the London art world in the middle of the nineteenth century. He appears as a model for characters in two of Rosetti's windows (Nos 3 and 7) for the Parable of the Tenents of the Vineyard in the East Window.

He began his career in his father's printing, binding and bookselling business, with a reading-room, at Courtrai, Belgium.

In April 1840 Gambart arrived in England, representing Goupil's print publishing business. By Autumn 1842 he had formed a partnership known as Gambart & Junin, which specialized in the import of prints from the Continent. Gambart launched his career as one of the leading print publishers of the mid-Victorian period, with engravings after all the most celebrated British and continental artists of the time, including Edwin Landseer, John Everett Millais, Rosa Bonheur, Lawrence Alma-Tadema and William Holman Hunt. Probably his most famous publication (1858) was the engraving by William Henry Simmons of Hunt's The Light of the World.

On 8 July 1846 Gambart became a British subject. Gambart's business dealings with living artists were considered to be scrupulously fair, although artists under contract often complained of his stringent observation of the terms of agreements.
Artists with whom Gambart made business arrangements include John Linnell, Turner, David Roberts, Landseer, Frederick Goodall, Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Holman Hunt, Ford Madox Brown and William Powell Frith.Gambart was married three times but had no children. On his retirement in 1870 the remaining years were spent as Spanish Consul-General in Nice. Top


Algernon Charles Swinburne (1837-1909) was a Victorian era English poet. He appears firstly as a model for a character in one of Rossetti's windows of the Parable of the Tenents of the Vineyard in the East Window, and secondly as the model for Burne-Jones Daniel in the Mission Window.


He was born in London to Admiral Charles Henry Swinburne and Lady Jane Henrietta, but grew up on the Isle of Wight. Swinburne attended Eton college and then Balliol College, Oxford

He is considered one of the Pre-Raphaelites. Two early works, Atalanta in Calydon (1865) and Poems and Ballads, First Series (1866), established him as England's premier poet.
Besides his poetry, Swinburne was active as a critic, and authored several volumes of literary criticism including Note on Charlotte Brontë (1880), Study of Shakespeare (1877), and The Age of Shakespeare (1909).

His personal life was chaotic owing to his excitable temperament, which was not improved by his excessive drinking, and a fondness for portraying himself as a master of vices of all kinds.

In 1879 his legal advisor Theodore Watts-Dunton persuaded him to adopt a healthier lifestyle; as a result of this and of his increasing deafness he saw less of those of his friends who were a negative influence. Swinburne lived the rest of his days at "The Pines," Watts-Dunton's house outside London. He died of influenza in 1909. Top