© National Portrait Gallery, London
by James Basire, after William Mason, and after Benjamin Wilson Click on the links below to find out more
line engraving, published 1 March 1775 (circa 1771)
10 3/4 in. x 8 1/4 in. (274 mm x 208 mm) paper size
Bequeathed by (Frederick) Leverton Harris, 1927
- Thomas Gray (1716-1771), Classical scholar and poet. Sitter in 13 portraits.
- James Basire (1730-1802), Engraver. Artist associated with 85 portraits, Sitter in 1 portrait.
- William Mason (1725-1797), Poet and divine; friend and biographer of Thomas Gray. Artist associated with 9 portraits, Sitter associated with 10 portraits.
- Benjamin Wilson (1721-1788), Portrait painter and scientist. Artist associated with 43 portraits, Sitter in 5 portraits.
Act of Parliament extends inventor James Watt's patent (first granted in 1769) and the first steam engines are built under it.First known building society - Ketley's Building Society - is established in Birmingham by Richard Ketley, landlord of the Golden Cross Inn.
Art and science
First performance of Richard Brinsley Sheridan's play The Rivals
at the Covent Garden Theatre in London.Artist J.M.W. Turner is born. Satirist James Gillray's first engravings and etchings are published.Navigator Captain Cook publishes his discovery of a preventive cure against scurvy, in the form of a regular ration of lemon juice.
War of American Independence begins with British defeat at Lexington and Concord and lasts until 1783. British achieve a narrow and costly victory over the Americans at the Battle of Bunker Hill. Edmund Burke delivers a speech to the British Parliament on conciliation with the American colonies. First performance of Pierre Beaumarchais' comic opera The Barber of Seville
in Paris. Pope Pius VI succeeds Pope Clement XIV as the 251st pope.