William Ewart Gladstone

LL 707


Gladstone met the sculptor on 15 May 1882, presumably to plan the making of Ford’s statue of the politician (unveiled at the National Liberal Club in 1883) and of his bust of which this is a version. No sittings, however, are recorded and Ford may have relied on memory or on other images of Gladstone. The bust is very similar to the upper part of the statue but is not identical. William Ewart Gladstone (1809 - 1898) was a Liberal MP who served as Prime Minister four times. Lever was also a Liberal and described Gladstone as his political hero. Lever met Gladstone in 1891 when he visited Port Sunlight and was so overwhelmed by the occasion that he was unable to sleep that night.