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Richard Ansdell, 1815–1885

The Caledonian Coursing Meeting

Former Title(s):

The Caledonian Coursing Meeting near the Castle of Ardrossan, the Isle of Arran in the Distance [1985, Cormack, YCBA Concise Catalogue]

The Caledonian Coursing Meeting near the Castle of Ardrossan, March 1844

Oil on canvas
61 1/8 × 119 15/16 inches (155.3 × 304.6 cm), Frame: 66 3/4 × 126 1/2 × 3 1/2 inches (169.5 × 321.3 × 8.9 cm)

Signed and dated

Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
Paintings and Sculpture
Subject Terms:
castle | club (association) | costume | dogs (animals) | estuary | field | greyhounds (breed) | horses (animals) | hunters | hunting | island | landscape | meeting | men | mountains | rabbits | riders, horseback | sporting art
Associated Places:
Ardrossan | Arran, Island of | Clyde, Firth of | North Ayrshire | Scotland | United Kingdom
Not on view
IIIF Manifest:

This vast painting represents a hare coursing competition organized by the Caledonian Coursing Club in Ayrshire, southwest Scotland, in March 18, 1844. It was commissioned by the club’s committee as a prize for the 1845 competition and was paid for with the entrance fees of over seventy participants. The most prominent figure is the club’s honorary secretary, Alexander Graham, riding the gray horse and carrying a red pennant. Graham is joined by his stewards: to the left, the Marquess of Douglas on a white horse; to the right, the Earl of Eglinton on a chestnut. The competing greyhounds occupy the foreground along with their handlers. John Gibson, owner of the victorious greyhound Violet, won the painting but a dispute arose. Violet had not been entered for competition by Gibson but by Allan Pollok, who took immediate legal action. Ownership of the painting was finally decided in Gibson’s favor by a court in 1848.

Gallery label for installation of YCBA collection, 2016

Malcolm Cormack, Concise Catalogue of Paintings in the Yale Center for British Art, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 1985, pp. 16-17, N590.2 A83 (YCBA) [YCBA]

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