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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

Sir William Charles Windeyer, 1892

Tom Roberts

oil on canvas (frame: 66.0 cm x 56.2 cm)

Sir William Windeyer (1834–1897) was a politician and judge. One of the first undergraduates to study at the University of Sydney, he developed a particular interest in education and the rights of women – he was responsible for the Married Women’s Property Act of 1879, and was Founding Chairman of the university’s Women’s College. As a young man he worked as a reporter on Henry Parkes’s radical liberal newspaper Empire. Windeyer represented West Sydney in the Legislative Assembly intermittently from 1860; in 1876 and 1878–1879 he was attorney general in the Parkes–Robertson coalition. This portrait is one of a trio that Tom Roberts dubbed ‘Church, State and the Law’ – the others were a portrait of Parkes, and one of Cardinal Moran. Parkes wrote in Fifty Years in the Making of Australian History (1892) that ‘My friend Windeyer was a young man of high spirit, bold and decisive in the common incidents of life, with a strong capacity for public affairs. He would have made as good a soldier as he has made a sound Judge.’

Gift of the family of Sir Victor and Lady Windeyer 2009
Donated through the Australian Governments' Cultural Gifts Program

Accession number: 2009.15

Currently on display: Gallery Four (Liangis Gallery)

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Artist and subject

Tom Roberts (age 36 in 1892)

Sir William Windeyer (age 58 in 1892)

Donated by

Jim Windeyer (16 portraits)

Jennifer Lockhart (7 portraits)

James Lockhart (7 portraits)

Alison I. Lockhart (7 portraits)

Catherine M. Crouch (7 portraits)

Robert F. Windeyer (7 portraits)

© National Portrait Gallery 2020
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Canberra, ACT 2600, Australia


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Fax +61 2 6102 7001
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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.