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John Wilkes (1725-1797), Politician; MP and agitator

Sitter associated with 47 portraits
Artist associated with 1 portrait
Wilkes's imprisonment for libel and banishment from the House of Commons brought into question the validity of parliamentary elections. Arrested in 1763 for publishing an attack on the King's speech in his newspaper The North Briton, his case became a popular cause, sparking violent public protests to the cry of 'Wilkes and Liberty'. Finally permitted to take his seat in 1774, he was then elected Lord Mayor of London. With his squint, crossed eyes and long jaw, Wilkes was called the ugliest man in England at the time, but he was well known for his verbal wit and snappy responses to insults.

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1702

John Wilkes

by Unknown artist
silver medal, 1768
On display in Room 14 at the National Portrait Gallery
NPG 1702

284

John Wilkes

by Unknown artist
black and white chalk with grey wash on paper, (1769)
NPG 284

6133

Mary Wilkes; John Wilkes

by Johann Joseph Zoffany
oil on canvas, exhibited 1782
On display in Room 14 at the National Portrait Gallery
NPG 6133

D8326

John Wilkes ('Patriotick Meteors')

after Unknown artist
line engraving, circa 1760s
NPG D8326

D8505

John Wilkes ('Malice and Fortitude')

after Unknown artist
line and stipple engraving, 1760s
NPG D8505

D21366

'The Times', Plate 1

by William Hogarth
etching and engraving, published 1762
NPG D21366

D22618

John Wilkes

after Unknown artist
wax impression of a seal, (1763-1768)
NPG D22618

D37521

John Wilkes

by Johann Sebastian Müller, published by Carington Bowles
line engraving, published 1763
NPG D37521

D1362

John Wilkes

by William Hogarth
etching, published 16 May 1763
NPG D1362

D8329

John Wilkes

by Johann Sebastian Müller
line engraving, published 1763
NPG D8329

D8506

John Wilkes

by William Hogarth
etching, published 16 May 1763
NPG D8506

D13903

John Wilkes

by William Hogarth
etching, published 16 May 1763
NPG D13903

D14332

John Wilkes

by Johann Sebastian Müller, published by Carington Bowles
line engraving, published 1763
NPG D14332

D37526

John Wilkes

by James Watson, after Robert Edge Pine
mezzotint, published 1764
NPG D37526

D8508

John Wilkes

by James Wilson, after Robert Edge Pine
mezzotint, published 1764
NPG D8508

D21661

John Wilkes ('English Liberty established or a Mirrour for Posterity')

printed for J. Lee, sold by J. Williams, sold by J. Kingsberry
etching and line engraving, published May 1768
NPG D21661

D21662

John Wilkes

by John June
etching and line engraving, 1768
NPG D21662

D37523

John Wilkes

by William Dickinson, published by S. Sledge, after Robert Edge Pine
mezzotint, published 1768
NPG D37523