15 of 24 portraits of Joseph Addison
by Jacobus Houbraken, after Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt
line engraving, published 1748
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Artistsback to top
This portraitback to top
This engraving includes pictorial attributes that point to Addison's career as a playwright and poet. The small scene in the roundel depicts the mythical horse Pegasus, sometimes regarded as a symbol for poetic genius.
Subjects & Themesback to top
Events of 1748back to top
Current affairsIn his role as magistrate, Henry Fielding organises the forerunner of the Bow Street Runners, effectively London's first police force.
Fire in the City of London causes over a million pounds worth of damage.
Art and scienceTobias Smollett publishes The Adventures of Roderick Random.
Samuel Richardson publishes Clarissa; the longest novel in the English language.
Philosopher David Hume publishes An Enquiry concerning Human Understanding.
Physician John Fothergill's pamphlet Account of the Sore Throat attended with Ulcers contains the first description of diphtheria.
InternationalAncient Roman city of Pompeii is rediscovered near Naples, further fuelling a resurgence of interest in the antique among British collectors such as the diplomat Sir William Hamilton.
Treaty of Aix-La-Chapelle ends the War of the Austrian Succession.
French writer Montesquieu anonymously publishes his influential treatise on political theory L'Esprit des Lois (The Spirit of the Laws).