Catalogue entry


Inscribed ‘Colonel David Woodburn/Bengal Artillery/ Painted by Chinnery’ in ink in a (?) nineteenth-century hand on stretcher
Oil on canvas 18 3/4×14 3/4 (47.7×37.5)
Bequeathed by Alan Evans to the National Gallery and transferred to the Tate Gallery 1974

Chinnery arrived in India in December 1802 and stayed there until sailing for China in 1825. From 1808 onwards, he was in Bengal, working for the greater part of this time in a studio in Calcutta, where he had a very prolific practice in portrait painting.

Woodburn became a Firemaker in the Bengal Artillery in 1771 and stayed with this regiment for the whole of his career, serving in the 2nd and 3rd Mysore Wars. He was made a Lieutenant Colonel in 1796 and Colonel in 1801, and died while on leave at a house in Charles Street, Berkeley Square, London, on 25 July 1804. The painting must therefore date from sometime between Chinnery's arrival in India and Colonel Woodburn's departure for England, presumably in late 1803 or early 1804.

(The details of the sitter's career have been kindly supplied by Mr Nigel Arch of the National Army Museum).

Published in:
The Tate Gallery 1974-6: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions, London 1978