Thomas Runciman was born in Northumberland in 1841, and died in London in 1909. He was the second son of Walter Runciman of Dunbar and Jean Finlay, his wife. In his youth he left the beautiful coast where his father was stationed to go to school and work in Newcastle. Artists of his name had been men of mark in Scotland, and as he had their strong feeling for colour he was allowed for a time to become a pupil of William Bell Scott, who was on the fringe of the Pre Raphaelite Movement. Throughout his life he painted portraits and landscapes, but the latter were what he loved. His work was not widely known, for he had a nervous contempt for Exhibitions, and the first collection of his landscapes in water colour and oil was opened to the public at a posthumous exhibition in Newcastle in 1911. He travelled from time to time, and enjoyed living on the banks of the Seine, and in other beautiful regions abroad.