Description

    Joshua Reynolds Autograph Letter Signed. One page, 7.25" x 8.75", Leicester Fields [London, England]; August 16, 1772. A letter from Reynolds to an unnamed correspondent concerning a portrait of a Nancy Reynolds and payment due for two works of art: "I forgot to ask you when I had the honour of seeing you last, about Nancy Reynolds's Picture it is at present in the Possession of Sir Wm. Boothby who would be very glad to keep it. He had it on condition to return it to you if it was demanded. If you will please by a line to signify your consent he may then have full possession of the lady. I take this opportunity of mentioning that I have a small bill on you for your own Picture and the Pieta of Palma Giovane the first was twelve Guineas the other twenty." Signed in full, "Joshua Reynolds." Reynolds's reference to the Pieta of Palma Giovane is to a work Pieta by Jacopo Negretti, Palma II Giovane (1544-1628). The letter suggests that Reynolds painted a copy of the work for his correspondent. An interesting letter by one of the most famous English painters of the 18th century, indicating what artists of his stature were making for producing a painting.

    Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792), one of the most influential 18th century English artists, was born in Devon, England. In 1753, Reynolds helped form the Royal Academy to define new aspects in British art. By 1760, he had become so successful that he was able to purchase a house in the affluent London neighborhood of Leicester Fields. At the height of his popularity, Reynolds became president of the Royal Academy of Art in 1768 and was knighted the following year. He later became official court painter to King George III.

    Sir William Boothby (1721-1787) was Master of the Horse to the Duke of York and served in the British Army. He sat for a portrait by Reynolds in 1765.

    Condition: The letter has horizontal and vertical folds, with repairs along the middle horizontal fold on the verso. The vertical fold shows signs of weakness near the top of the letter. The left hand side and the bottom of the letter have tape on the verso.


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    Auction Dates
    May, 2017
    11th Thursday
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