Monument to Field Marshal Lord Clyde (Sir Colin Campbell). John Henry Foley (1818-74), R. A. 1867; unveiled 1868. Bronze, on a granite pedestal. George Square, Glasgow. [Click on images to enlarge them.
Glasgow-born Sir Colin Campbell, or Lord Clyde as he became, was the great military hero who commanded the "Thin Red Line" of Highland soldiers who drove back the Russians at Balaclava in 1854. He was also the Commander-in-Chief of the Indian army during the first Indian War of Independence, particularly noted for his defence of Lucknow. The statue shows him standing” by the stump of a palm tree, in loose campaign attire, brimmed hat in one hand, telescope in the other, and sword at his side. He looks sturdy and stout-hearted, "with that mixture of grimness and care and eminent intelligence" in his face, for which he was known in life (qtd. in McKenzie 137). However, the fact that the statue depicted him in the prime of life, while his accoutrements seemed to indicate the later, Indian phase of his career, did raise some hackles, as did the need to move the monument of another military hero, Flaxman's Sir John Moore (of 1819), to make a more pleasing arrangement of statuary in the square.
The siting of statues is often an issue (cf. the relative positions of Gladstone [behind] and Disraeli [in front of] St George's Hall, Liverpool), and, along with the size of the public subscriptions raised, indicates the great importance the Victorians attached both to their heroes and to their representations.
Photographs by the author, 2009. [You may use these images without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the photographer and (2) link your document to this URL.]
MacKenzie, Ray. Public Sculpture of Glasgow. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2002.
Created 12 October 2009
Last modified 30 January 2020