The Kings Candlesticks - Family Trees
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Very Rev Charles Peter LAYARD [19210]
Elizabeth WARD [19211]
Nathaniel AUSTEN of Ramsgate [27155]
Henry Peter John LAYARD [27127]
Marianne AUSTEN [27154]

Sir Henry Austen LAYARD GCB PC [27156]


Family Links

Mary Enid Evelyn GUEST [27157]

Sir Henry Austen LAYARD GCB PC [27156]

  • Born: 5 Mar 1817, Paris BS France.
  • Marriage: Mary Enid Evelyn GUEST [27157] on 9 Mar 1869 in Hanover Sq Westminster LND
  • Died: 5 Jul 1894, London aged 77
  • Buried: Gt Canford DOR

bullet   Another name for Henry was Austen Henry.


bullet  General Notes:

In a Henry Austen Layard biography he said the inspiration for his adventures was the book Arabian Nights he read as a child.

Sir Austen Henry Layard GCB PC. 1817 - 1894
Was an English traveller, archaeologist, cuneiformist, art historian, draughtsman, collector, politician and diplomat. He is best known as the excavator of Nimrud and of Nineveh, where he uncovered a large proportion of the Assyrian palace reliefs known, and in 1851 the library of Ashurbanipal.

Layard was born in Paris, France, to a family of Huguenot descent. His father, Henry Peter John Layard, of the Ceylon Civil Service, was the son of Charles Peter Layard, Dean of Bristol, and grandson of Daniel Peter Layard the physician. Through his mother, Marianne, daughter of Nathaniel Austen, banker, of Ramsgate, his English descent was consolidated. His uncle was Benjamin Austen, a London solicitor and close friend of Benjamin Disraeli in the 1820s and 1830s. Edgar Leopold Layard the ornithologist was his brother.

Early life
Much of Layard's boyhood was spent in Italy, where he received part of his schooling, and acquired a taste for the fine arts and a love of travel; but he was at school also in England, France and Switzerland. After spending nearly six years in the office of his uncle, Benjamin Austen, he was tempted to leave England for Sri Lanka (Ceylon) by the prospect of obtaining an appointment in the Civil Service, and he started in 1839 with the intention of making an overland journey across Asia.

After wandering for many months, chiefly in Persia, with Bakhtiari people and having abandoned his intention of proceeding to Ceylon, he returned in 1842 to Constantinople, where he made the acquaintance of Sir Stratford Canning, the British Ambassador, who employed him in various unofficial diplomatic missions in European Turkey. In 1845, encouraged and assisted by Canning, Layard left Constantinople to make those explorations among the ruins of Assyria with which his name is chiefly associated. This expedition was in fulfilment of a design which he had formed when, during his former travels in the East, his curiosity had been greatly excited by the ruins of Nimrud on the Tigris, and by the great mound of Kuyunjik, near Mosul, already partly excavated by Paul-Émile Botta.

Excavations and the arts
Layard remained in the neighbourhood of Mosul, carrying on excavations at Kuyunjik and Nimrud, and investigating the condition of various peoples, until 1847; and, returning to England in 1848, published Nineveh and its remains : with an account of a visit to the Chaldean Christians of Kurdistan, and the Yezidis, or devil worshippers; and an inquiry into the manners and arts of the ancient Assyrians. (2 vols., 1848 -1849).

To illustrate the antiquities described in this work he published a large folio volume of The Monuments of Nineveh. From Drawings Made on the Spot (1849). After spending a few months in England, and receiving the degree of D.C.L. from the University of Oxford and the Founder's Gold Medal of the Royal Geographical Society, Layard returned to Constantinople as attaché to the British embassy, and, in August 1849, started on a second expedition, in the course of which he extended his investigations to the ruins of Babylon and the mounds of southern Mesopotamia. He is credited with discovering the Library of Ashurbanipal during this period. His record of this expedition, Discoveries in the Ruins of Nineveh and Babylon, which was illustrated by another folio volume, called A Second Series of the Monuments of Nineveh, was published in 1853. During these expeditions, often in circumstances of great difficulty, Layard despatched to England the splendid specimens which now form the greater part of the collection of Assyrian antiquities in the British Museum.
Also paintings at the National Gallery.
Layard believed that the native Syriac Christian communities living throughout the Near East were descended from the ancient Assyrians.

Apart from the archaeological value of his work in identifying Kuyunjik as the site of Nineveh, and in providing a great mass of materials for scholars to work upon, these two books of Layard were among the best written books of travel in the English language.

Layard was an important member of the Arundel Society. During 1866 Layard founded "Compagnia Venezia Murano" and opened a venetian glass showroom in London at 431 Oxford Street. Today Pauly & C. - Compagnia Venezia Murano is one of the most important brands of venetian art glass production. In 1866 he was appointed a trustee of the British Museum.

Political career
Layard now turned to politics. Elected as a Liberal member for Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire in 1852, he was for a few weeks Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, but afterwards freely criticised the government, especially in connection with army administration. He was present in the Crimea during the war, and was a member of the committee appointed to inquire into the conduct of the expedition. In 1855 he refused from Lord Palmerston an office not connected with foreign affairs, was elected lord rector of Aberdeen university, and on 15 June moved a resolution in the House of Commons (defeated by a large majority) declaring that in public appointments merit had been sacrificed to private influence and an adherence to routine. After being defeated at Aylesbury in 1857, he visited India to investigate the causes of the Indian Mutiny. He unsuccessfully contested York in 1859, but was elected for Southwark in 1860, and from 1861 to 1866 was Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs in the successive administrations of Lord Palmerston and Lord John Russell. After the Liberals returned to office in 1868 under William Ewart Gladstone, Layard was made First Commissioner of Works and sworn of the Privy Council.
The Right Honourable Sir Austen Henry Layard GCB
Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs
12 February 1852 - 21 February 1852
First Commissioner of Works
9 December 1868 - 26 October 1869
Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire
1877 - 1880

Diplomatic career
Layard resigned from office in 1869, on being sent as envoy extraordinary to Madrid. In 1877 he was appointed by Lord Beaconsfield Ambassador at Constantinople, where he remained until Gladstone's return to power in 1880, when he finally retired from public life. In 1878, on the occasion of the Berlin Congress, he was appointed a Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath.

Retirement in Venice
Layard retired to Venice. There he took up residence in the sixteenth-century palazzo on the grand canal named Ca Cappello, just behind Campo San Polo, and which he had commissioned historian Rawdon Brown, another long-time British resident of Venice, to purchase for him in 1874. In Venice he devoted much of his time to collecting pictures of the Venetian school, and to writing on Italian art. On this subject he was a disciple of his friend Giovanni Morelli, whose views he embodied in his revision of Franz Kugler's Handbook of Painting, Italian Schools (1887). He wrote also an introduction to Constance Jocelyn Ffoulkes's translation of Morelli's Italian Painters (1892 - 1893), and edited that part of Murray's Handbook of Rome (1894) which deals with pictures. In 1887 he published, from notes taken at the time, a record of his first journey to the East, entitled Early Adventures in Persia, Susiana and Babylonia. An abbreviation of this work, which as a book of travel is even more delightful than its predecessors, was published in 1894, shortly after the author's death, with a brief introductory notice by Lord Aberdare. Layard also from time to time contributed papers to various learned societies, including the Huguenot Society, of which he was first president. He died in London and is buried in Dorset.

Paraphrased from Layard of Nineveh by Gordon Waterfield.
By Jane Layard Herasimenko - 2018
"His parents: Henry Peter John Layard (who initially went to Ceylon but had to return to Ramsgate having developed such bad asthma) and shortly after (summer of 1815) married Marianne Austen daughter of Nathanial Austen banker, at the Church of the St. Lawrence. Her brother was Benjamin Austen, a London solicitor and close friend of Benjamin Disraeli in the 1820s and 1830s
They did not have much money so decided to live in France......their first son Henry was born in a hotel on the left bank of Parish on 5 March 1817 When they returned to Ramsgate in July Henry Austen was baptised....later three other boys Frederick, Arthur and Edgar were born.
In search of a place where Henry Sr. could live and his asthma would improve they tried Bath, Moulins, Switzerland and Pisa, Florence was found to be the best.......however, Henry Sr. entertained generously having become accustomed to the Ceylon life style.
Due to lack of funds, Henry Jr. went to work at the age of 16 at a solicitor's office.....he was bored stiff and left in 1839 with a companion setting off to ride to Ceylon in search of a more adventurous job. Though his companion did arrive in Ceylon, Henry never did........"

Layard The Right Honourable Sir Austen Henry otherwise Henry Austen of 1 Queen Anne St, Middlesex and of CaCapello Venice Italy GCB formally her Britannic Majesty's ambassador at Constantinople died 5 July 1894 at 1 Queen Anne St. Probate London 27 July 1894 to Dame Mary Enid Evelyn Layard widow and Lachlan Mackintosh Rate and Edward Ponsonby Esq's.
Effects £87,301 15s 0d re-sworn December 1801 £92,161 16s 4d
National Probate Calendar

bullet  Research Notes:

Henry he is often referred to as Sir Austen Henry Layard...
...when in fact he was Christened Henry Austen Layard. His Uncle Benjamin Austen had no children to pass along his estate and law practise and fervently wished Henry to change his name to Austen and be his heir. Henry Jr. hated working in the law offices and had other ideas......but for a while to humor his Uncle he did go by Austen Henry Layard rather than Henry Austen Layard.
By Jane Layard Herasimenko - 2018


bullet  Other Records

1. Henry's Passport: Original & translation, 5 Jul 1839.
Page 1

No 5087
Nous Henri Jean Vicomte Palmerston
Baron Temple Conseiller de Sa Majesté Britannique en Son
Conseil Privé, Chevalier Grand Croix du très Honorable
Ordre du Bain et Son Principal Sécrétaire d'Etat
ayant le Departement des Affaires Etrangères.

Prions et uérons, au Nom de Sa Majesté,
tous Amiraux, Généraux, Gouveeurs,Commandans, Magistrats et
autres Officiers, tant Civils que Mtaires, quelsqu'ils puissent être
des Princes et Etats, Amis et Aiés de Sa Majesté, non seulement
de laisser passer M. Austin Henry Layard, Gentilhomme Anglais

allant aux Ins Orientales par le Continent de l'Europe,

avec Ses Hardes et Bagages;

sans lui donner ni permete qu'il lui soit donné
Empêchement quelconque, mai aussi de lui prêter toute
l'Aide el tout le Secours dont il, pourra avoir
besoin dans Sa Route Ce que Nous promettons de réciproquer
en pareille Occasion.

En foi de quoi nous avons signé ce Passeport et y avons
fait apposer l'Empreinte de Nos Armes.

Donné à ondres ce 5 juillet 1839


N. 4841

No 975.Visto buono in prosecuziore per battaro
Rapuse 20. agosto 1839.
In m di Capitano circolare
Il amministratore

Page 2
König London, den 5 Juli1839 Gratis 211 Vu à l'ambassade ottomane à Londres, bon pour se rendre en turquie le 17 Juillet 1839 le chargé d'affaires de la S. N. ottoman Aaliz No 695 gratis Gesandtschaft London den 5 Juli 1839 für Vu à l'Ambassade d'Autriche bon pour les Etats autriches Londres le 5 Juillet 1839 125 Visto buono per Nag 15 agosto 1839 Capitano Circolare Lie Com Cir gratis Vu à La Légation Belge à Londres, le 8 Juillet 1839. Bon pour se rendre en Belgique Le Secrétaire, C Drouet No 8782 Coblenz. Sachen zwanzigsten Juli o.a. No 1015 Gratis Vu sans préjudice a l'a g. L. z3 m 111, au Bureau de Ostende (Belgique), le 12 Juillet 1839, pour se rendre Le Préposé aux Passeports, No 5751 H. Cherling No 301 Vu à l'Administration de la Sûreté Pu= blique du Royaume de Belgique, le 15 Juillet 1839 pour se rendre à Liège Le Chef du Bureau des Passeports No 966 Vû à la Légation de S. M. Britque Britque Bon pour Constantinople par Venice et Trieste W. Lett Munich 25 Juillet 1839 r 23 Juli 1839, No: 6862 München am fünfundzwanzigsten Juli 1830 18 3825 Gesesn bey der K.K. Gesandtschaft Muchen 26. Juli 1839. 14 Aug 1839 No 2252 n 3119 na
Visto b
via di V
Page 3
10. 151 Juli 1830 28 July No. 333 no in prosecuzione di gli Stati Ottomani, ntenero. Dall & A Capitanato Circolare battaro 23 agosto 1839 No 5624 Venezia 2 Agosto 1839 Visto all' T.R. Dir. Gen. di Pol. nelle Prov. Ven. buono per Trieste 20692 Trieste li 3 Agosto 1820 all' T.R. Direzione di Polizio No 3189. Visto buono per prosseguire il viaggio via di Segna 9 Agosto 829 Sonnard 622 Bartha 8/8 39 260 Luy N li 25 andante buono per Costaninopoli Dall' Scutari li Per il D B Concell

Seen in Baghdad this
23rd May 1840

P.A. S Arabia

Vu à l'Ambassade de
Sa Majesté Britannique ce 8
Juillet 1842
Bon pour l'Angleterre
Page 4
Visto buono prosseguire per dall 12 Agosto 1839 Visto buono prosseguire di viaggio per Segna Dall 18 Agosto 1839 F P 125 Buono e rimesso per futuro uso di terra con l'aver tempo d'una porta f largo Dall' Necchin 21 Agosto 1839 Per gr assente No: 960 Visto, e si retto per onde prosseguire per Leberino 13 Agosto 839 C de Visto Magazza li 22 agosto 1839. del C. M deputato pedito N. V
3 Visto buono proseguire d'viaggio per Na
Visto inquest' I. R. Internunziatura (in un tempo ove non c'è peste) vale per Vienna. 229 Costantinopoli 18 Luglio 1842 522. Legazione
Mr. Austin Layard
No 89 New Passport given in
lieu. August 19 1842

Mr Austin Layard
New Passport given
i lieu to 87. Augt.19.

Translation by H.R. Herasimenko 2018
Page 1
We Henri Jean Vicomte Palmerston Baron Temple Adviser of His Britannic Majesty in His Privy Council, Knight Grand Cross of the Right Honorable Order of the Bath and Principal State Secretary having the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Let us pray and let us, in His Majesty's name, all Admirals, Generals, Governors, Commanders, Magistrates (Judges) and other officers, both civilians and mayors, whoever they may be Princes and States, Friends and Aides of His Majesty, not only to let Mr. Austin Henry Layard pass, English gentleman going to Eastern Ins by the Continent of Europe, with his tatters and luggage; without giving him or allowing him to be given any impediment, may also lend him any help and all the help he may need in his road what we promise of reciprocal in similar opportunity.

In faith whereof we have signed this Passport and had the stamp of Our Weapons affixed to it.

Given at Ondres this 5th of July 1839


Seen at the Embassy Ottoman in London, good for to go to turkey July 17, 1839
The business charge of S. N. ottoman Aaliz

No1916 Free
Seen at the Austrian Embassy good for the Austrian states London on July 5, 1839

Free Seen at The Belgian Legation in London, July 8, 1839. Good to go to Belgium The Secretary, Drouet C

No 301
Seen at the Public Security Administration of the Kingdom of Belgium, 15 July 1839 to go to Liège The Chief of the Passport Office

No 966
See the Legation of S.M. Britque Britque Good for Constantinople by Venice and Trieste W. Lett Munich July 25 1839

München am fünfundzwanzigsten
Juli 1830
Munich 25th July

Seen in Baghdad this
23rd May 1840

P.A. S Arabia

Seen at the Embassy of His Britannic Majesty this 8 July 1842 Good for England of


Henry married Mary Enid Evelyn GUEST [27157] [MRIN: 371020183] on 9 Mar 1869 in Hanover Sq Westminster LND. (Mary Enid Evelyn GUEST [27157] was born on 1 Jul 1843 in Merthyr Tydfil WLS, died on 1 Nov 1912 in Venice Italy and was buried in Gt Canford DOR.)

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