EDWARDS, Edwin

1823 - 1879

Edwin Edwards

Edwin Edwards was born at Framlingham, Suffolk on 6 January 1823, son of Charles Edwards (1787-13 February 1875), a banker of Bridgham Hall, near Attleborough, Norfolk, formerly of Framlingham, and his wife Mary Kersey (1798-1874), daughter of Thomas Kersey of Great Glemham, Suffolk, who married on 24 February 1817. Living at East Bergholt, Suffolk, Edwin was educated at Dedham grammar school and in 1845 admitted a solicitor. He built up a large practice in London as proctor, examiner in the Courts of Civil Law and of the High Court of the Admiralty at Doctorsí Commons and published law books 'Cases in the Prerogative Court with Respect to Wills' (1847), 'Treatise on the Jurisdiction of the High Court of Admiralty' (1847), and 'Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction' (1853). After a trip to the Tyrol in 1859, Edwards decided to give up his legal work, which provided him with a substantial pension, to follow his tastes as an artist and etcher. He worked initially in watercolours, but the example of the French painter Alphonse Legros (1837-1911), working on a plate at Edwards's house in Sunbury-on-Thames, inspired him to attempt the etching medium. In 1861 he made the acquaintance of Henri Fantin-Latour (1836-1904) and other French artists and commenced painting oil, some fifty of his works were exhibited at the Royal Academy including from Thames Bank House, Sunbury-on-Thames in 1861 'Under the Chestnuts, Burgate, Surrey, in 1862 etchings 'Durham, from "a top o' the banks"', 'Under the Willows, Sunbury-on-Thames', 'Mill Pond, Oakham, Surrey' and a drypoint 'Durham and exhibited until 1879 from 26 Golden Square, London 'Beer, Devonshire' also showing at the Paris Salon. As an etcher his works are numerous consisting of scenes in the London area, the cathedral cities, and of Cornwall and Suffolk. He married at Hendon on 11 August 1852, Elizabeth Ruth Escombe (8 September 1832-29 May 1907), daughter of William Escombe of the Bombay Civil Service. In 1870, Edwin and his wife, known as Ruth, visited Edward FitzGerald at his Little Grange home in Woodbridge, Suffolk and were frequent visitors over the coming years. Edwin Edwards died, without issue, at his home, 26 Golden Square, London on 15 September 1879, aged 56, and buried at Brookwood, near Woking. After the death of Edwin, his wife Ruth completed and printed the final part of Edwin's 'Old Inns of England'. He also illustrated the works of Longfellow and Wordsworth. A portrait of Edwin and Ruth, by Fantin-Latour is now in the National Gallery.




Works by This Artist