Portraits in disguise - NPG 4573
Edward Wortley Montagu
by Matthew William Peters
Edward Wortley Montagu (1713-76), was a traveller and linguist specialising in Arabic and European languages; from 1762 he travelled in Italy, Egypt and the Holy Land. This portrait was possibly painted in Italy where the artist was resident from 1772-6. Another portrait of Montagu in the Gallery's collection shows him as a child with his mother, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, (renowned for introducing the practice of inoculation for small-pox) in Turkish costume. Painted c.1717, it was probably by Jean Batiste Vanmour, Painter-in-Ordinary to the Sultan from 1725. Engravings of his paintings were to influence the eighteenth century fashion for being painted and masquerading 'à la Turque'. Peters' portrait is deliberately intended to evoke the paintings of orientals, and Westerners in oriental dress, by Rembrandt and his followers. The lighting here is especially Rembrandtesque and recalls his last self-portrait of 1669, in the Mauritshuis, The Hague.
by George Romney, c .1770-1776
NPG 19 (Detail)
This gentleman wears an informal morning coat or dressing gown trimmed with fur. Under this is worn the fashionable waistcoat trimmed with braid and which gradually becomes shorter in length. Tight knee breeches clearly show the button and buckle fastenings.