William Shakespeare sits next to Homer on the frieze of the Albert Memorial London

- Image ID: AGJ0X4
Steve Taylor ARPS / Alamy Stock Photo
Image ID: AGJ0X4
AM was commissioned by Queen Victoria in memory of her beloved husband, Prince Albert of Saxe Coburg Gotha who died of typhoid in 1861, and designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott in the Gothic revival style. The monuments symbolim implies that Albert was intellectually equal to the greatest minds in virtually every field of human endeavour throughout the ages. Opened in 1872, with the statue of Albert ceremonially "seated" in 1875, the memorial consists of an ornate pavilion containing a statue of Prince Albert facing south. This is surrounded by the elaborate sculptural Frieze of Parnassus, which depicts 169 individual composers, architects, poets, painters, and sculptors. There are two allegorical sculpture programs: four groups depicting Victorian industrial arts and sciences (agriculture, commerce, engineering and manufacturing), and four more groups representing Europe, Asia, Africa and The Americas at the four corners, each continent-group including several ethnographic figures and a large animal. (A camel for Africa, a buffalo for the Americas, an elephant for Asia and a bull for Europe.) The sculptor Henry Hugh Armstead coordinated this massive effort among several arists of the Royal Academy, including Hamo Thornycroft.