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James Maitland, 8th Earl of Lauderdale

8 of 262 portraits by Thomas Gainsborough

Mid-Georgian Portraits Catalogue

James Maitland, 8th Earl of Lauderdale

after Thomas Gainsborough
late 18th century
5 5/8 in. x 4 3/8 in. (143 mm x 111 mm)
NPG 928

This portraitback to top

Received in 1892 as a self portrait by Gainsborough, and previously identified as Pitt by Reynolds or Sir J. Bassett by Gainsborough, [1] NPG 928 is a copy of the Gainsborough half length of Lauderdale, now in Stanford University. [2] A small oval version, attributable to Gainsborough Dupont, [3] the same size as NPG 928, belonged to Lady Hillingdon in 1936 [4] and there is a copy at Thirlestane.

Footnotesback to top

1) The panel retains early nineteenth-century labels verso: Pitt/by Sir Jha Reynolds and Sir J Bassett (and see note 4 below).
2) E. K. Waterhouse, Gainsborough, 1958, no.431; illus. Gazette des Beaux Arts, CXI, 1978, March supp., p 49, no.218.
3) A typescript by Waterhouse (NPG archive), based on the 1936 Gainsborough exhibition, identified this picture as having belonged to Richard Dupont; sold Wheeler & Westoby, Sudbury, 29 May 1874, lot 142, and Christie’s, 14 June 1875, lot 77 as from the collection of Gainsborough Dupont.
4) Exhibited as ‘Sir J. Bassett’ Conversation Pieces, 25 Park Lane, 1930 (118), and Gainsborough, 45 Park Lane, 1936 (85).

Physical descriptionback to top

Blue eyes, powdered wig, white neckcloth, yellow waistcoat, blue coat.

Provenanceback to top

Miss Clark;1 bought in Bath by Mackay; bought from Colnaghi by Lord Ronald Sutherland Gower 1879 and presented by him 1892.2

1 G. W. Fulcher, Life of Thomas Gainsborough, 1856, p 205: His own portrait’ belonging to Miss Clark ‘The size of a large miniature'; she appears to have owned several paintings by Gainsborough in the 1850s and 1860s, see M. Davies, National Gallery Catalogues, The British School, 1946, p 183.
2 Provenance from an old label verso: Portrait of T Gainsborough by himself mentioned in Fulcher’s Life of the artist as size of a large miniature belonging to Miss Clarke Bought by me at Colnaghi’s May 1879 from Mr McKay who had purchased it at Bath/Ronald Gower. See R. S. Gower, Bric à Brac, 1888, p 70.

Exhibitionsback to top

Gainsborough, Grosvenor Gallery, 1885 (4 as a self portrait); Loan Exhibition, Ipswich 1887 (888 as a self-portrait).


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.

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