John Playfair(1748-1819), Mathematician and geologist
Sitter in 9 portraits
Mathematician, geologist and Professor of Natural Philosophy at Edinburgh University, John Playfair helped to create the modern science of geology. He began his career as tutor to Robert and Ronald Ferguson of Raith, the subjects of Henry Raeburn’s portrait ‘The Archers’ in the National Gallery. Raeburn was a largely self-taught artist who rose to become the leading portraitist in Scotland. In 1822 he was knighted by George IV and appointed the King's Limner in Scotland.