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The Kit-cat Club portraits: paintings by Sir Godfrey Kneller, circa 1697-1721


43 Portraits in set

These portraits are of a group of influential men pledged to uphold the 'Glorious Revolution' of 1688 and the Protestant succession. Founded by Somers, the Lord Chancellor and the publisher Tonson, the club began meeting in Christopher Cat's tavern near Temple Bar, and took its name from his mutton pies known as Kit-cats. Members included Whig MPs and landowners as well as writers. The artist, Kneller, adopted a standard 'kit-cat' format of 36 x 28 inches instead of the standard 30 x 25 inches for the portraits. In the 1730s they hung in a special room which Tonson junior had built at his house at Barn Elms.

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Charles Dartiquenave, after Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt - NPG 3201

Charles Dartiquenave

after Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt
oil on canvas, based on a work of 1702
NPG 3201

John Dormer, by Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt - NPG 3203

John Dormer

by Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt
oil on canvas, circa 1705-1710
NPG 3203

William Walsh, by Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt, and  studio of Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt - NPG 3232

William Walsh

by Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt, and studio of Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt
oil on canvas, circa 1708
NPG 3232