Home > Artists > Sir Leslie Ward > Artwork

Sir Lewis McIver, Bart, MP 'The Member For Scotland'

Spy (Sir Leslie Ward) (1851-1922)



Watercolour with bodycolour

13 x 8 ¼ inches

A G Witherby;
Stanley Jackson

Vanity Fair, 23 July 1896, Statesmen no 674, 'The Member For Scotland'

Chris Beetles & Alexander Beetles (eds.) Portraits of Vanity Fair: The Charles Sigety Collection, London: Chris Beetles Ltd, 2023, page 119

'Vanity Fair 1869-1914', Church Farm House Museum, Hendon, September-December 1983;
'Portraits of Vanity Fair: The Charles Sigety Collection', Chris Beetles Gallery, London, October-November 2023, no 57

Sir Lewis McIver (1846-1920) was a Liberal politician who first entered the Commons as MP for Torquay in 1885. He lost this seat the following year and joined the Liberal Unionist Party. In 1895 he stood successfully for Edinburgh West and held the seat until his resignation in 1909.

“John McIver, Secretary of the Presidency Bank in Madras, became his father half a century ago; and having learned what he might at school and at Bonn University, he became a Barrister eighteen years back, while he was yet in the Indian Civil Service. He has held a dozen various positions, such as that of Under-Secretary, to the Government in Burma, of Chief Magistrate in Rangoon, of Magistrate in the Nilgiri District, and of Registrar of the High Court; and he is President of the London, Ross, and Cromarty Association. Eleven years ago he sat for Torquay; and last year he was the chosen of the West Division of Edinburgh: for he is a wholesome Liberal-Unionist, who though he stands six feet is every inch a patriot.

His Queen honoured him with a Baronetcy on her last birthday; and he is commonly supposed to have deserved it. Though he is only at present in his third Session, his figure and his frock-coat and his virtue make him something of a feature in the House. In the Session of '85 he was famous for his speeches; in the Session of '95 he has been equally famous for his silence. For he is a man of variety in his life, as he has shown. Five-and-twenty years ago he was among the best waltzers in town; now he is among the best speakers in Scotland. He is an all-round sportsman who has given much attention to Friendly Societies; of the best of which he is an honorary member. His seventeen years in India have shown him how great England is, and he has been all over Scotland piping for his Party and for his country; wherefore he is known as the ‘Member for Scotland.’ He is also well known at bazaars, at football matches, at tea-fights, and at Ranelagh.

He has been called a connection of Mr. Gladstone; yet he is a hot Unionist. He likes paradox; for, having been everywhere, he knows the world. He is a genial fellow who has a future.”

Related Artwork