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Landseer had his first interview to discuss this picture two months after the royal couple's marriage in 13 April 1840; at this stage the painting seems to have been planned as a happy sequel to Queen Victoria Riding Out (Royal Collection), which was exhi

The royal couple loved to present each other with artistic gifts

Sir Edwin Landseer (1803-73)

Eos Signed and dated 1841

RCIN 403219

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This full-length portrait of Prince Albert's favourite greyhound, Eos, was commissioned by Queen Victoria and presented to Prince Albert at Christmas. Eos stands poised and alert, guarding her master's possessions - his leather gloves, top hat and ivory-topped cane. Landseer is said to have borrowed the hat and gloves without Prince Albert's knowledge, which caused some panic among his personal servants when the prince decided to go out and they were not to be found. Evidently the secrecy was a success: Queen Victoria wrote on Christmas Eve:

Amongst my presents to him was a large life size picture of Eos by Landseer, with which he was quite delighted, & it came as a complete surprise.

Queen Victoria's Journal, 24 December 1841