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Mr Reuben David Sassoon 'Mr Reuben Sassoon'

Spy (Sir Leslie Ward) (1851-1922)



Watercolour and bodycolour on tinted paper

13 ½ x 10 inches

Vanity Fair, 20 September 1890, Men of the Day no 482, 'Mr Reuben Sassoon'

Chris Beetles & Alexander Beetles (eds.) Portraits of Vanity Fair: The Charles Sigety Collection, London: Chris Beetles Ltd, 2023, page 91

'Portraits of Vanity Fair: The Charles Sigety Collection', Chris Beetles Gallery, London, October-November 2023, no 44

Reuben David Sassoon (1835-1905) was a prominent Jewish businessman and member of the vastly wealthy Sassoon family. His father, David Sassoon, as a trader in China and Treasurer to Baghdad from 1817 to 1829, had monopolised the Sino-Indian Opium trade in the nineteenth-century. Reuben Sassoon worked as a director for his father’s company, David Sassoon & Co. and was on the Board of Directors of the China Steamship and Labuan Coal Company.

“The third son of the late David Sassoon of Bombay, and one of a race of lucky Indian merchants, he went to China in his early youth; and, having made a fortune in business, he now spends his money royally. He is fond of the Play; and, being also fond of Sport, he has for some years had a few horses in Mr. Leopold de Rothschild's stable; Theodore, by Sir Bevys, being the best and most profitable that he has owned. He is a friend of the Prince of Wales, though he has not been with him at Homburg this season; and, having no enemies, he is popular in Society. He is full of charity, yet he is quite an unostentatious man.

He entertained the Shah.”

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