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John Locke

John Locke, by Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt, based on a work of 1704 -NPG 550 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Later Stuart Portraits Catalogue

John Locke

after Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt
based on a work of 1704
29 1/2 in. x 24 1/2 in. (749 mm x 622 mm)
NPG 550

This portraitback to top

A palpable copy of the signed original Kneller of 1704 now in the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond VA. [1] Versions include those at Knole, [2] Lincoln’s Inn, and the Royal Society. [3]
An extended three-quarter-length version (with a table to the right) in the Royal Collection [4] was copied by Hermann Goldschmidt in 1847 for Versailles. [5]

Footnotesback to top

1) J. D. Stewart, Godfrey Kneller, 1983, no.441, pl.74; from the collection of Lord Howe, Gopsal Hall sale, 29 October 1918, bought by the dealer J. Rochelle Thomas; sold Christie’s, 31 May 1920, lot 47; engraved J. Smith 1721 (J. Chaloner Smith, British Mezzotinto Portraits, 157); painted at Oates for Anthony Collins (Locke Corr., VIII, nos. 3613, 3617, 3619, 3624).
2) C. J. Phillips, History of the Sackville Family, 1929, II, p 438 as 1697.
3) Presented in 1774 (N. H. Robinson, The Royal Society Catalogue of Portraits, 1980, pp 200-01, illus.). Another copy is in the Government Art Collection (8528; illus. The Public Catalogue Foundation, Government Art Collection, p 165). Pastel versions were at Sotterly Hall (Lt.-Col. St. J. Barne) in 1956, and with the late Dr Peter Laslett (from M. G. M. Williams at Shelvingstone, Sonning, the final inheritor of the remains of the contents of Oates; Laslett letters, 28 April 1965; 8 December 2000, NPG archive).
4) O. Millar, The Tudor, Stuart and Early Georgian Pictures in the Collection of Her Majesty The Queen, 1963, no.377 as after Kneller.
5) Versailles 2084; Les Peintures, 1995, I, p 405.

Referenceback to top

Ellis 1843
Sir Henry Ellis, List of Portraits suspended on the Walls of the Eastern Zoological Gallery, British Museum, no.99.

Piper 1963
D. Piper, Catalogue of the Seventeenth Century Portraits in the National Portrait Gallery 1625-1714, 1963, pp 209-10.

Provenanceback to top

Presented by Matthew Maty MD (1718-76, Principal Librarian of the British Museum 1772-76) to the British Museum 1760; transferred to the NPG 1879.

Exhibitionsback to top

Voltaire et L’Europe, l’hôtel des Monnaie, Paris, 1994–95, no.108; Westminster School 1981–.


This extended catalogue entry is from the National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: John Ingamells, National Portrait Gallery: Later Stuart Portraits 1685–1714, National Portrait Gallery, 2009, 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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