Thursday, 17 July 2014

Welcome And Watson

A warm new follower welcome to Conrad Kinch of the Joy and Forgetfulness blog and elsewhere.

Following on from my rather lazy post yesterday, here's another picture of a shark - rather more highbrow this time.

It's Watson and the Shark painted in 1778 by John Singleton Clark (and copied lots of times since).

Watson is the lad in the water.  From a family wealthy merchants, he went to sea at the age of 14.  He was swimming in Havana Harbour when he was attacked by the shark.  Although he was rescued, Watson had his right leg amputated below the knee.

This didn't hold him back too much.  He was a commissary to the British Army during the French and Indian War and Commissary General during the Revolution.  In 1772 he was a member of the founding committee of Lloyds of London, later serving as Chairman.  He was elected an Alderman of the City of London and was MP for the City from 1784 to 1793.  He was Lord Mayor for 1796/7 and Deputy Governor of the Bank of England.


  1. I remember seeing that painting on Robert Hughes' excellent series on American art, 'American Visions', many years ago now. Thanks for sharing the story behind it, Edwin!

  2. High brow shark pictures are so much better than low brow ones. The shark depicted looks a little Mythos-ie to me. Interesting chap I'm enjoying your stream of consciousness blogging its influencing my own blogging.

  3. Ahoy there Edwin! Sorry to be away for so long. Thanks for the shout out when I did my giveaway. I'll take a look at Bloggers for Charity and promote it as well.

  4. An image that sparks many a boyhood memory; this was considered gratuitous violence in my day. ;)


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