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This is the third and final sculpture which Leighton produced, the others being the more heroic male nudes 'An Athelte Wrestling with a Python' and 'The Sluggard', which are both displayed nearby.

The subject here is a child frightened by a toad, but Leighton is mainly interested in capturing the gentle contours of the figure. When 'Needless Alarms' was shown at the Royal Academy it was much admired, especially by the painter Millais, who acquired a cast of it.

August 2004