This white marble bust of David Sassoon, created in 1865 by Thomas Woolner, likely commemorated Sassoon’s generous donation towards the construction of the Museum building, much like the six pointed star which covers the Museum’s decorative ceiling. A Baghdadi Jew, Sassoon settled in Bombay in 1832, attracted by the religious tolerance and trading opportunities in the city. He arrived, bringing little with him. His business acumen soon made him one of the most successful merchants in the city. By the end of the 1850's it was opined that "silver and gold, silks, gums and spices, opium and cotton, wool and wheat - whatever moves over sea or land feels the hand or bears the mark of Sassoon and Co". In an age when trade, industrialism and philanthropy went hand in hand in the city, Sassoon, and later his sons, funded the construction of a Mechanics' Institute, a library, and a convalescent home in Pune and the docks in Colaba - named the Sassoon docks, these were the first wet docks in Bombay and continue to be city landmark. Sassoon was conscious of a duty towards his community, building synagogues and encouraging the growth of Jewish identity through organized religious education.


  • Title: Bust of David Sassoon
  • Creator: Thomas Woolner
  • Date: 1865
  • Physical Dimensions: L165.5 cm x W 41.9 cm x H 58.7 cm
  • Material: Marble
  • Gallery: Industrial Arts Gallery

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