- Extended Catalogue Entry
by George Vertue
watercolour and bodycolour on vellum, 1731
1 7/8 in. x 1 5/8 in. (48 mm x 41 mm) oval
Given by C.A. Marsden, 1969
Artistback to top
- George Vertue (1683-1756), Engraver and antiquary. Artist associated with 864 portraits, Sitter in 7 portraits.
This portraitback to top
Gven by Vertue to Johnson as a token of friendship. More detailed information on this portrait is available in a National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue, John Kerslake's Early Georgian Portraits (1977, out of print).
Linked publicationsback to top
- Kerslake, John, Early Georgian Portraits, 1977, p. 159
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 340
- Walker, Richard, Miniatures: 300 Years of the English Miniature, 1998, p. 55 Read entry
Maurice Johnson could not have chosen a more suitable artist to paint his portrait than George Vertue. They were both present at the first meeting of the revived Society of Antiquaries at the Mitre Tavern, Fleet Street, in 1717. Johnson claimed to have been the Society's first librarian, and was an avid collector of manuscripts. Vertue, apart from being the Society's official engraver for years, was a compulsive observer of the art scene in England; his Notebooks are still a major source for the history of painting before 1756. His engravings are brilliant; his skill at miniature painting less so.
Events of 1731back to top
Current affairsLegal proceedings in British courts are conducted in the English language for the first time.
Art and scienceSculptor Michael Rysbrack creates a monument to Newton in Westminster Abbey.
The influential Gentleman's Magazine is launched on 1 January.
Agriculturalist Jethro Tull publishes his pioneering treatise The New Horse-Houghing Husbandry.
InternationalTreaty of Vienna with Austria is signed by Philip Dormer Stanhope, 1st Earl of Chesterfield on behalf of Britain, marking the collapse of the Anglo-French Alliance (1727-1731) and the beginning of the Anglo-Austrian Alliance.
Trader Robert Jenkins has his ear cut off by Spanish coast guards in Cuba leading to the War of Jenkins' Ear in 1739.
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