George Bouverie Goddard 1832 Salisbury – 1886 Brook Green Hammersmith
Animal painter George Bouverie Goffard . At ten , his drawings were in demand as the productions of youthful genius yet he received no artistic training and it was in the face of much opposition that he adopted art as a profession .
He came to London in 1849 and spent upwards of two years in making studies of animal life in the Zoological Gardens. During this time he supported himself mainly by drawing on wood sporting subjects for ‘Punch’ and other illustrated periodicals . He then returned to Salisbury where he received many commissions but finding his sphere of work too limited , he settled in London in 1857. He began to exhibit at the Royal Academy in 1856 sending a painting of ‘Hunters’ and becoming an Associate of the Royal Academy . Goddard was a lover of all field sports and at home equally in the covert & the hunting-field . He died at his residence at Brook Green, Hammersmith - London after a very short illness from a chill caught during a visit to his dying father whom he survived only by a few hours .
Hereabove – ‘Comparisons are odious’ (engraved by John Greenaway 1816-’90) and published in the The Illustrated London News anno 1880 ; at right ‘Mastiff and King Charles Spaniel’ dd 1876 , another work by George Bouverie Goffard . Both Mastiff specimens seem to be lookalikes in almost the same pose , so perhaps depicting the same model .
One only can guess about its identity . There’s MB Wynn’ quote about Nero , a dog b ’71 bred & owned by TGF Hesketh , Baron at Park View Towcester but it’s also noteworthy to mention at that date Edwin Nichols , the most prominent Mastiff fancier in London , lived at Brook Green Hammersmith . Is it sheer coincidence the artist himself resided also at that really restricted London’area of only a few numbers of streets ? A step further being the presumption the Mastiff in his works might have been depictions of Mr Nichols’ home stud , the then four years old fawn Prince (ch Rajah x ch Queen) , full brother to that celebrated ch Wolse ; Prince renowned as having sired ch Beau owned by Mark Beaufoy.
Comparing the depictions hereabove of the parents of Nichols’ Prince to both Bouverie Goddard’ artworks , there’s a striking similarity off cheeks , ie Queen & Goddard’ example both show a peculiar inward curve off & down the somewhat lifted outer eyelid corner of the left eye , their respective eyelid forms & expressions look almost the same and ears which breed-wise seem both rather too short .
The Goddard specimen shows a backhand & tail which , placed in about the same positioning , resemble to those of Rajah … but still there’s the quote by MB Wynn re Nero and an owner who certainly had the money & the connections to commisssion this splendid painting …At left - other comparative examples .
At left - Nichols' Prince son ch Beau next to his granddaughter ch Beaufort' sis Lady Beatrice , both showing (less or more) that same peculiar inward curve off & down the somewhat lifted outer eyelid corner of the left eye ; the article at the right is taken from 'The Field' journal dd Dec 26th 1865 and mentions a/o Hanbury' Prince b 1862 (Lukey' Governor ex Hanbury' ch Duchess) who great-grandsired Nichols' Prince , that along Griffin & ch Rajah , the latter a Mastiff who lived up to an age of almost eleven years or about the age attained by his great-grandson ch Beaufort .