Mid-Georgian Portraits Catalogue

Joseph Wilton (1722-1803), Sculptor

Sculptor; studied in Paris from 1744 and in Italy 1747-55; Sculptor to the King 1761; executed the General Wolfe monument in Westminster Abbey 1773; foundation member of the RA 1768, librarian 1786 and keeper 1790.

‘Mr Wilton was in height about five feet ten inches, portly and well-looking: he always dressed in the height of fashion, and for many years wore a bag-wig, which, in his latter days, he changed for one with a long tail, and walked, as Gay might have said, with dignity and a gold-headed cane. As to his manners, they were perfectly gentlemanlike, which rendered him an agreeable companion' (J. T. Smith, 1828).

This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: John Ingamells, National Portrait Gallery: Mid-Georgian Portraits 1760-1790, National Portrait Gallery, 2004, 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.