The Birthday Outing

3 July 1851


This charming portrait was drawn in July 1851 to capture a family outing to Wimbledon Park in south London to mark the eleventh birthday of Victoria Alexandrina Fitzalan-Howard. Victoria is shown in the middle of the scene standing with her back to us by the fence alongside her young friend Mundie Würzberg.

The talented artist was Victoria’s mother, Lady Augusta Minna Lyons Howard (1821-1886). Lady Augusta was the daughter of Sir Edmund Lyons, British minister to Greece and it was in Greece that Lady Augusta met her future husband, Henry Granville Fitzalan-Howard (later the 14th Duke of Norfolk). Whilst a guest, Lord Fitzalan fell ill and was taken care of by Lady Augusta with whom he then fell in love. The pair married in 1839 and together had eleven children.

The drawing includes the artist’s mother and mother-in-law as well as her three eldest daughters, nieces, nephews and family friends, the Baron and Baroness Würzburg with their children.

Drawn on grey card in pencil with bodycolour and having been extracted from a distressed album of Lady Augusta’s work, this insightful and well-detailed scene is presented in a period bird’s eye maple frame with a gilt slip. The figures are named in pencil across the foot of the portrait with a further key to them affixed to the reverse of the frame.

Item Ref. 7034a

Size: framed, 203 x 258mm (8⅛ x 10⅛")

Provenance: Lady Augusta's Personal Album