Sir Richard Steele

Later Stuart Portraits Catalogue

Sir Richard Steele

by Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt
1711
36 in. x 28 in. (914 mm x 711 mm)
NPG 3227

Inscriptionback to top

Signed and dated, bottom left: G Kneller 1711 (GK in monogram).

This portraitback to top

The Kit-Cat Club portrait. Steele had fathered an illegitimate daughter c.1700 by Elizabeth, sister of the Club secretary Jacob Tonson, but this did not deter Tonson from becoming his publisher.
A crude pencil copy inscribed 1730, without background detail, is in the NPG reserve collection (D6634) and a drawing of this type by Edward Byng is in the British Museum. [1]

Footnotesback to top

1) E. Croft-Murray & P. Hulton, British Museum, Catalogue of British Drawings: XVI and XVII centuries, 1960, p 228 (1897.8.13.6; Byng 5:f.37r).

Referenceback to top

Piper 1963
D. Piper, Catalogue of the Seventeenth Century Portraits in the National Portrait Gallery 1625-1714, 1963, p 329.

Stewart 1983
J. D. Stewart, Godfrey Kneller, 1983, no.712.

Exhibitionsback to top

British Institution 1820, no.19; Art Treasures, Manchester, 1857, British Portrait Gallery 268; Second Special Exhibition of National Portraits ( ... William and Mary to MDCCC), South Kensington, 1867, no.111; Dublin 1872 (‘National Portrait Gallery’ 144); Royal House of Guelph, New Gallery, London, 1891, no.76; Marlborough and the Reign of Queen Anne, Chesterfield House, London, 1934, no.231; The World of Alexander Pope, 1988, no.30.

Reproductionsback to top

J. Simon, half-length oval, without background (J. Chaloner Smith, British Mezzotinto Portraits, 141);1 G. Vertue 1714;2 J. Faber II 1733 (J. Chaloner Smith, British Mezzotinto Portraits, 208/31).

1 Illus. C. Gibson-Wood, Jonathan Richardson, 2000, p 69, fig.26.
2 D. Alexander, ‘George Vertue as an Engraver’, Wal. Soc., LXX, 2008, no.102.


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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