Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Lord Ribblesdale -- John Singer Sargent (1902)

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The World of Portrait Painting
"Thomas Lister, fourth Baron Ribblesdale (1854-1925), the eldest son of the third Baron Ribblesdale of Gisburne Park, near Skipton in Yorkshire, was born in Fontainebleau and spent much of his childhood in France. His father's extravagance and gambling debts had injured the family's finances, compelling him to mortgage the Gisburne estate and let the house itself to tenants. The young Thomas Lister returned to England to be educated at Harrow, joining the army (64th Foot) in 1873, transferring to the Rifle Brigade in 1874, and retiring as major in 1886. He succeeded to the title as fourth Baron Ribblesdale on the suicide of his father in 1876 and took his seat in the House of Lords in 1877, where he sat as a Liberal. That same year, he married Charlotte ('Charty') Monckton Tennant, daughter of the industrialist and collector Sir Charles Tennant (see no. 406) and a leading figure in the aristocratic coterie known as 'the Souls'; it was the Tennant fortune that paid off the Gisburne mortgage and bought the Ribblesdales' Mayfair home, 32 Green Street. Charlotte suffered from consumption and died in 1911, and their sons, Thomas and Charles, were killed in Somaliland (1904) and in the First World War (1914), respectively."

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