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Francis Osborne, 5th Duke of Leeds

1 of 39 portraits by Benjamin West

Mid-Georgian Portraits Catalogue

Francis Osborne, 5th Duke of Leeds

attributed to Benjamin West
circa 1769
27 1/2 in. x 35 in. (692 mm x 889 mm)
NPG 801

This portraitback to top

An elaboration of West’s half-length graduation portrait of Lord Carmarthen (as he then was) painted in 1769. It was accepted in 1888 as by George Knapton, the attribution to West being proposed in 1970. [1] Although Erffa & Staley in 1986 thought it ‘probably not by West’, the head is taken directly from the 1769 half length by West formerly at Stanmer Park, while the consistently competent execution and impeccable provenance suggest it probably is by him.

Footnotesback to top

1) Note by John Kerslake on file.

Referenceback to top

Erffa & Staley 1986
H. von Erffa & A. Staley, The Paintings of Benjamin West, 1986, p 496n2.

Graves & Cronin
A. Graves & W. V. Cronin, A History of the Works of Sir Joshua Reynolds, 4 vols., 1899-1901, I, pp 151-52 (as Reynolds), and IV, p 1277 (as Knapton).

Physical descriptionback to top

Blue-grey eyes, fair hair with black silk ribbon, dressed for a masked ball, holding his mask by a silk frill in his right hand; wearing a white silk domino over a red silk suit, both trimmed with gold lace; his black hat decorated with gold braid and white ostrich feathers is on the table beside him; a green figured damask curtain in the background.1

1 Described in A. Ribeiro, The Gallery of Fashion, 2000, pp 126-27.

Provenanceback to top

By descent to the 3rd Earl of Chichester,1 by whom presented 1888.

1 The sitter’s daughter, Frances, married Thomas Pelham, 2nd Earl of Chichester. Scharf sketched NPG 801 at Stanmer Park in 1886 (Sir George Scharf's Trustees' Sketch Books, 33/51).

Exhibitionsback to top

Masquerade, Museum of London, 1983.

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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