Edward Lear

Edward Lear was born in 1812, 21st of 22 children. His sister brought him up, teaching him to paint. At 15, he started earning his living by selling his little sketches for 1 to 4 shillings. By 20 he had published in 12 parts his first book Illustrations of Parrots. He then worked for 5 years as the resident artist at Lord Stanley’s famous zoo in Knowsley Hall outside Liverpool. His eyesight was failing and the climate aggravated his bronchitis and asthma. In 1837 he set out for Rome and spent the rest of his life in warmer climes, staying for long periods in Corfu from 1848 to 1864, when Britain ceded the Ionian Islands to Greece.
Edward Lear is famous for his writing: the limericks and his Books of Nonsense but we meet him as a topographical landscape painter.

Edward Lear - the Corfu Years collates the letters he wrote to his friends. Here we use his own words to describe the places he visited with each slide prefixed by the Day on the Trail and the slide number. The picture above shows Lear (centre, back row) and a group of friends in Corfu who he met with almost daily between 1857 and 1858.

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