Symbolic: The Miner Enslaved

1938 in England
Gilbert Daykin

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Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Painting by Gilbert Daykin, 1886-1939. "Symbolic: The Miner Enslaved", 1938. Oil on canvas; 75.5x62.5cm in frame 88x75.5x7.5cm. Symbolic of the miner enslaved by his trade, Daykin remained a miner despite his artistic success. The miner is depicted in the position of Christ on the cross, chained to the seam wall, his pick on the ground beside, the scene lit by his lamp placed on the right.

Daykin worked as a miner at a pit near Sheffield and he produced a number of vivid artworks showing what the physical work of a coal miner was like down the pit. Sadly he was killed in 1939 in a mine shaft accident. Eleven artworks by Daykin were gifted by his family to the Science Museum in 1978.


Object Number:
overall (in frame): 880 mm x 755 mm x 75 mm,
image: 755 mm x 625 mm
oil painting
  • visual and verbal communication
  • oil painting - visual work
Daykin, A.

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