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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.

The Honorable Sir Frederick Darley, c. 1887

Henry Samuel Sadd (engraver)

mezzotint on paper (sheet: 37.0 cm x 32.2 cm, image: 27.7 cm x 22.1 cm)

More images of this artwork

Sir Frederick Darley GCMG (1830–1910), chief justice and lieutenant governor, was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, and called to the Bar at the King’s Inns in 1853. He worked in London, where he was also admitted, before returning to the Munster circuit, but decided to emigrate and left from Plymouth with his wife, Lucy, in 1862. He was admitted to the colonial Bar soon after arrival. In 1868 he was nominated to the Legislative Council by Sir James Martin, who admired his drive. After eleven years’ hard work he took silk in 1878. Following Martin’s death and the resignation of his successor, fifth chief justice Emanuel Salomons, after just a fortnight in the job, in 1886 Darley became sixth chief justice of New South Wales – with some reluctance, as it entailed a reduction in his income. He was knighted in 1887; he became lieutenant governor in 1891; further honours followed in 1897 and 1901. Following life-threatening surgery in 1901 he returned to England, where he recovered sufficiently to serve on the royal commission into the South African war. He came back to Sydney in 1903 and resumed his seat on the bench; having retired to England in 1909, he was interred the following year in the family plot in Ireland. The holiday house he built in the Blue Mountains, Lilianfels, is now the nucleus of a luxurious resort.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by L Gordon Darling AC CMG 2009

Accession number: 2009.61

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Henry Samuel Sadd (age 76 in 1887)

Hon. Sir Frederick Darley (age 57 in 1887)

Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

On one level The Companion talks about the most famous and frontline Australians, but on another it tells us about ourselves: who we read, who we watch, who we listen to, who we cheer for, who we aspire to be, and who we'll never forget. The Companion is available to buy online and in the Portrait Gallery Store.

Elizabeth, 2019 Anthea da Silva
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Darling Portrait Prize

Current exhibition

from Friday 6 March

The Darling Prize is a new annual prize for Australian portrait painters, painting Australian sitters. The winner receives a cash prize of $75,000.

Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti+Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti+Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti+Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti+Campbell

Uncommon Australians

The vision of Gordon and Marilyn Darling

Previous exhibition, 2015

This exhibition showcases portraits acquired through the generosity of the National Portrait Gallery’s Founding Patrons, L Gordon Darling AC CMG and Marilyn Darling AC.

The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery

The Gallery

Explore portraiture and come face to face with Australian identity, history, culture, creativity and diversity.

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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.