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Early Georgian Portraits Catalogue

George Whitefield (1714-1770), Methodist leader

Methodist; joined Society of Methodists as an Oxford undergraduate, 1735; a missionary preacher chiefly in London and the West Country from 1737, and in Georgia, 1738-39; ordained at Christ Church, Oxford, 1739; returned to Savannah; split with Wesleyan Methodists, 1741; opened Moorfields Tabernacle, 1741 and chapel in Tottenham Court Road, 1756; chaplain to Lady Huntingdon, 1748; Whitefield travelled widely both in the British Isles and America, which he visited again, 1744-48, 1751-52 and 1754-55, dying at Newburyport, Massachusetts, 1770. He married 14 November 1741 at St Martin's, Caerphilly, Elizabeth James, née Burnell, a friend of Wesley and ten years his senior.

'His well-known squint was the result of measles in childhood ... Whitefield's complexion was fair, his eyes dark blue and small; originally slender, he became corpulent from his fortieth year.' [1]

Footnotesback to top

1) Dictionary of National Biography, XXI, pp 85, 92.

Referencesback to top

Carter 1937
C. Carter, ‘Pottery of John Wesley', The Bazaar Exchange & Mart, 15 and 22 June 1937.

Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum, 1870-1954 (from 1935 by Dorothy George).

Williamson 1894
G. C. Williamson, John Russell R.A., 1894.


This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: John Kerslake, Early Georgian Portraits, Her Majesty's Stationery Office, 1977, and is as published then. For the most up-to-date details on individual Collection works, we recommend reading the information provided in the Search the Collection results on this website in parallel with this text.