The National Fund for Acquisitions recently celebrated its 60th anniversary in December 2013. To help them celebrate, many of this year’s Object of the Month posts will be objects acquired with support from the NFA, starting with May!
May’s Object of the Month is No Surrender, The Battle of Magersfontein, The Black
Watch – 11 December 1899, an oil painting by Frank Feller.
The battle of Magersfontein took place on 11 December, 1899, during the Boer War. It was the second of three major defeats suffered by the British Army within one week. The Black Watch were in the front during the dawn attack at Magersfontein and suffered heavy casualties, with 93 men killed and 209 wounded.
These defeats, known collectively as ‘Black Week’ in Britain, shocked the public. Popular feeling at the time was strongly sympathetic to the fighting soldier. No Surrender reflects the public mood and celebrates the heroism of the common soldier.
Frank Feller (1848-1908) was a Swiss artist who settled in England. He is known for his regimental costume studies published as illustrations to Her Majesty’s Army in 1890/1.
The painting was purchased with the assistance of the National Fund for Acquisitions in February 2000.