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Samuel Arnold

1 of 4 portraits of Samuel Arnold

Samuel Arnold, by George Dance, 1795 -NPG 1135 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Regency Portraits Catalogue

Samuel Arnold

by George Dance
1795
10 in. x 7 1/2 in. (254 mm x 191 mm)
NPG 1135

Inscriptionback to top

Signed and dated lower left: Geo: Dance Jan 25th 1795.

This portraitback to top

At the time of Dance's portrait Dr Arnold was aged 55, organist of Westminster Abbey and celebrated, apart from his opera and oratorios, for his ambitious project to issue the complete works of Handel. A miniature of about 1790 shows him holding the first of about 40 volumes which he was able to produce before a fall down the steps of the Abbey library prevented him from completing the plan.

Physical descriptionback to top

Head and shoulders seated in profile to left, grey powdered wig, queue tied with black ribbon, lace cravat, coat with heavy collar; lower lip faintly coloured red. The contemporary mount is prepared for engraving with parallel lines and lettered: D [long space] ARNOLD M. D., though Daniell's soft-ground etching is lettered Samuel Arnold Mus. D.

Provenanceback to top

Dance family possession and sold by the Rev George Dance, the artist's grandson, Christie's, 1 July 1898 (7), among a large collection of George Dance drawings; bought Colnaghi for the NPG.

Reproductionsback to top

Soft-ground etching in reverse by William Daniell published 1812 in A Collection of Portraits ... by George Dance, Esq. R.A., 1814, II, p 58 (see Thomas Sutton, The Daniells Artists and Travellers, 1954, pp 175-6).


This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: Richard Walker, Regency Portraits, National Portrait Gallery, 1985, 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.

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