William Mason

1 portrait

William Mason, by William Doughty, 1778 - NPG 4806 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

William Mason

by William Doughty
oil on canvas, 1778
30 in. x 24 7/8 in. (762 mm x 632 mm)
Purchased, 1970
Primary Collection
NPG 4806


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Sitterback to top

  • William Mason (1725-1797), Poet and divine; friend and biographer of Thomas Gray. Sitter associated with 10 portraits, Artist associated with 9 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • William Doughty (1757-1781 or 1782), Portrait painter and mezzotint engraver. Artist associated with 13 portraits, Sitter associated with 2 portraits.

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Subjects & Themesback to top

Events of 1778back to top

Current affairs

Catholic Relief Act is the first to provide a measure of catholic emancipation, modifying the penal laws that effectively prevented Catholics from holding public office. The reform is encouraged by the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Mansfield, who had balked at various prosecutions under the statutes now repealed.

Art and science

Francis D'Arblay, writing as Fanny Burney, publishes her novel Evelina, or the History of a Young Lady's Entrance into the World, in which she satirises contemporary society. Engineer Joseph Bramah invents a type of flush toilet, replacing the usual slide valve with a hinged flap that seals the bottom of the bowl.

International

American War of Independence: France, joining the American colonies in their fight against Britain, sends a large fleet across the Atlantic. The British rapidly abandon Philadelphia. The American naval hero John Paul Jones makes successful raids around the coasts of Britain. James Cook's third Pacific voyage, aboard the ships HMS Resolution and HMS Discovery, first views Oahu then Kauai in the Hawaiian Islands, which Cook names the Sandwich Islands.

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