The Museum of London has recently purchased two iconic Victorian paintings supported by generous grants from the Heritage Lottery Fund and the National Art Collections Fund.
Eastward Ho! August 1857, by Henry Nelson O'Neil shows the vivid drama of soldiers boarding a ship at Gravesend. They are leaving to fight in the Indian 'Mutiny' - the first Indian war of Independence in 1857. A companion painting Home Again, 1858 shows the soldiers' return a year later.
The Indian Mutiny was seen as a shocking challenge to British supremacy in India. It generated emotive and patriotic coverage in the press and in works of art. O'Neil's paintings focus on the impact of war at home and captured the public mood. They came to symbolise the effect of the many overseas wars, fought in the name of the Empire, on ordinary British people.
Click on the links above to explore the paintings further.
The paintings will be on display at the Museum in Docklands from mid-2005.