Horace Walpole(1717-1797), Writer and collector
Horatio ('Horace') Walpole, 4th Earl of Orford
Sitter associated with 20 portraits
The youngest son of the Prime Minister Sir Robert Walpole, Horace Walpole was one of the eighteenth century's most famous writers, collectors and socialites. A pioneer of the Gothic taste in art, architecture and literature, he formed an exceptional collection at Strawberry Hill, the 'little Gothic castle' which he designed in Twickenham. His literary works include the first history of English art, Anecdotes of Painting, 1762, and the Gothic novel, The Castle of Otranto, 1764. Walpole was a great socialite and his collected letters are full of gossip and information about the most fashionable figures of the eighteenth century. He succeeded in 1791 as 4th Earl of Orford.
Watch a film clip on the sitter from the BBC Archive in the Media section below
by Thomson, after Bentley
stipple engraving, circa 1822
- Maria (née Walpole), Duchess of Gloucester and Edinburgh (niece)
- Robert Walpole, 1st Earl of Orford (father)
- Robert Walpole, 2nd Earl of Orford (brother)
- George Walpole, 3rd Earl of Orford (nephew)
- Horatio Walpole, 1st Baron Walpole of Wolterton (uncle)
- Catherine Walpole (née Shorter), Lady Walpole (mother)
- Galfridus Walpole (uncle)
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