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This informal group portrait, or conversation piece’, shows Dr John Clayton, founder of Salford Grammar School, with a fellow teacher and ten of their pupils at the end of their school term. Dr Clayton stands, as if on a stage set, at the entrance to his school. In his hand he holds a scroll, containing a Latin quotation from the classical poet Horace, which can be translated as ‘Now drink in these Words with a pure heart, boy’. While some of the boys recite verses especially written for the end of term, others are already engaged in sports and various high jinks.

August 2004