News and Commentary from the British Association for Romantic Studies

Blake on the Twenty Pound Note?

by Thomas Phillips, oil on canvas, 1807

William Blake, by Thomas Phillips, oil on canvas, 1807.  National Portrait Gallery 212.  Kindly made available under a Creative Commons License.

The Bank of England has just launched a public consultation to help them decide which figure should appear on the next twenty pound note.  They’re looking to ‘celebrate Britain’s achievements in the visual arts’.  According to The Guardian, leading contenders include J.M.W. Turner and William Blake.  With the new Jane Austen tenner due out soon, there’s a possibility that quite a number of Romantic-period faces could be in circulation when the new note appears in 2020.  Nominations can be made here.