Search the Collection

Francis Horner

(1778-1817), Political economist

Sitter in 5 portraits
In 1802, Francis Horner helped to found the Edinburgh Review, for whose editor, Francis Jeffrey, he was to supply many articles in the next few years. Horner entered Parliament as a Whig MP in 1806; the main issue on which he campaigned was that of Catholic Emancipation. He was part of the Holland House set, a circle of Whig politicians and men of letters which flourished around Henry Richard Fox, third Baron Holland, and his wife, Elizabeth Vassall Fox, Lady Holland, at their mansion at Kensington.

List Thumbnail

Francis Horner, by John Henning - NPG 2677

Francis Horner

by John Henning
pencil and chalk, circa 1802
NPG 2677

Francis Horner, by John Henning - NPG 2678

Francis Horner

by John Henning
wax medallion, 1806
NPG 2678

Francis Horner, by Sir Henry Raeburn - NPG 485

Francis Horner

by Sir Henry Raeburn
oil on canvas, 1812
NPG 485

Francis Horner, by and published by Samuel William Reynolds, after  Sir Henry Raeburn - NPG D19590

Francis Horner

by and published by Samuel William Reynolds, after Sir Henry Raeburn
mezzotint, published 4 July 1818 (1812)
NPG D19590

Francis Horner, by Samuel William Reynolds, after  Sir Henry Raeburn - NPG D3099

Francis Horner

by Samuel William Reynolds, after Sir Henry Raeburn
mezzotint, published 1843
NPG D3099

Tell us moreback to top

Can you tell us more about this person? Spotted an error, information that is missing (a sitter’s life dates, occupation or family relationships, or a date of portrait for example) or do you know anything that we don't know? If you have information to share please complete the form below.

If you require information from us, please use our Archive enquiry service. If you wish to license an image, please use our Rights and Images service.

Please note that we cannot provide valuations.

We digitise over 8,000 portraits a year and we cannot guarantee being able to digitise images that are not already scheduled.

Carl P J Horner, BA, PGCE

27 July 2016, 00:40

Francis Horner was born in Edinburgh on August 12th, 1778. After studies in both England and Scotland, he was called to the Scottish Bar in 1800 and to the English Bar in 1807. During this period, he studied political economy extensively and helped found the influential Edinburgh Review. He was a Scottish Whig MP from 1806 for a number of seats. In 1810 he chaired the famous Bullion Committee, which investigated the high price of gold, inconvertible paper money and the gold standard. Its Report is one of the classic documents of monetary theory. He died in Pisa, Italy on February 8th 1817.
Horner's review of Henry Thornton's book is considered an able and concise summary of an important but sometimes difficult text. According to MEGA IV/7, Marx read Horner's 1802 review in London in 1851. Marx quotes from one of his speeches in the House of Commons against child slavery in Capital. His brother, Leonard Horner, was the factory inspector, quoted by Marx repeatedly in Capital, who exposed the oppressive conditions workers were forced to endure in the workplace.
Works:
Review of Henry Thornton: 'Inquiry into the Nature and Effects of the Paper Credit of Great Britain', 1802.
Review of Lord King: 'Thoughts on the Restriction of Payments in Specie at the Banks of England and Ireland', 1803.
(with Henry Thornton and William Huskisson): Report from the Select Committee on the High Price of Bullion ('The Bullion Report'), 1810.
https://www.marxists.org/reference/subject/economics/horner/index.htm

What can you tell us?close

There are occasions when we are unsure of the identity of a sitter or artist, their life dates, occupation or have not recorded their family relationships. Sometimes we have not recorded the date of a portrait. Do you have specialist knowledge or a particular interest about any aspect of the portrait or sitter or artist that you can share with us? We would welcome any information that adds to and enhances our information and understanding about a particular portrait, sitter or artist.

Citationclose

How do you know this? Please could you let us know your source of information.

* Permission to publish (Privacy information)
Privacy Informationclose

The National Portrait Gallery will NOT use your information to contact you or store for any other purpose than to investigate or display your contribution. By ticking permission to publish you are indicating your agreement for your contribution to be shown on this collection item page. Please note your email address will not be displayed on the page nor will it be used for any marketing material or promotion of any kind.

Please ensure your comments are relevant and appropriate. Your contributions must be polite and with no intention of causing trouble. All contributions are moderated.

Your nameclose

If you tick permission to publish your name will appear above your contribution on our website.

Your Emailclose

Contributions are moderated. We'll need your email address so that we can follow up on the information provided and contact you to let you know when your contribution has been published.