Allan Ramsay

1 portrait on display in Room 16 at the National Portrait Gallery

Allan Ramsay, by Allan Ramsay, 1776 - NPG 1660 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Allan Ramsay

by Allan Ramsay
red chalk heightened with white on buff paper, 1776
11 3/8 in. x 8 1/2 in. (289 mm x 216 mm)
Purchased, 1912
Primary Collection
NPG 1660


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Sitterback to top

  • Allan Ramsay (1713-1784), Portrait painter. Sitter in 3 portraits, Artist associated with 118 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • Allan Ramsay (1713-1784), Portrait painter. Artist associated with 118 portraits, Sitter in 3 portraits.

This portraitback to top

The son of a Scottish poet of the same name, Allan Ramsay was brought up in Edinburgh and began to draw at the age of twelve. After a period of study in London and in Italy, he set up as a portrait-painter in London in 1738 and was especially patronised by the Scottish nobility. In 1761 Ramsay painted the full-length state portraits of George III and Queen Charlotte, and he was appointed one of His Majesty's Principal Painters in Ordinary. Early in 1773 he fell from a ladder and permanently damaged his painting arm. No longer able to paint professionally, Ramsay devoted his time to his family, to writing and to travel. This self-portrait was drawn on the Isle of Ischia which he visited in 1776 to treat his arm in the baths which were famous for their curative powers.

Linked publicationsback to top

  • Rogers, Malcolm, Master Drawings from the National Portrait Gallery, 1993 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 5 August to 23 October 1994), p. 57
  • Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 511
  • Smart, Alastair, Allan Ramsay, 1713-1784, 1992 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from Catalogue of exhibition held at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh, 1 Aug. - 27 Sept. 1992; and the National Portrait Gallery, London, from 16 Oct. 1992 - 17 Jan. 1993.), p. 92

Linked displays and exhibitionsback to top