Sir Denis Mahon

At Westport House in the West of Ireland this week, I saw a portrait of Mahon as a young man. He wears a suit and his OE tie. Turns out that his mother was a Browne, the family name of the Marquess of Sligo, owner of the house until recently.

Mahon doesn’t come across too well from his part in the Tate Affair. He left behind a string of silly, rather hysterical notes, in which he commented on the situation as if he were a member of Dad’s Army, using quaint, absurd quasi-military language. He clearly regarded hounding John Rothenstein as a great game, which he relished. It was disappointing to find his own papers inaccessible because uncatalogued.