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Alexander Pope

1 portrait matching these criteria:

Early Georgian Portraits Catalogue

Alexander Pope

by Jonathan Richardson
circa 1737
24 1/8 in. x 18 in. (613 mm x 457 mm)
NPG 1179

This portraitback to top

Although undated and apparently unique, NPG 1179 is very near a profile drawing with bay wreath of 1737 at Windsor Castle. [1] The handling of the oil is free and sensitive and possibly one of Richardson's most successful portraits. The first extant dated drawing of the laureate poet is a three-quarter face dated 31 January 1733/34 in the British Museum [2] in which the sitter appears slightly older than in NPG 1179.

Footnotesback to top

1) W. K. Wimsatt, The Portraits of Alexander Pope, 1965, p 179, pl.35.
2) W. K. Wimsatt, The Portraits of Alexander Pope, 1965, p 170, pl.23a.

Physical descriptionback to top

Profile; grey eye, light brown eyebrow, wisps of dark hair just visible beneath dark green bay wreath, pale complexion; grey-blue gown over white shirt; brown background.

Conservationback to top

A number of small retouchings, including a large one on the eyebrow.

Provenanceback to top

Presented, 1898, by Alfred A. de Pass of Cliffe House, Falmouth; previous history unknown.


This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: John Kerslake, Early Georgian Portraits, Her Majesty's Stationery Office, 1977, 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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