- Museum number
Portrait medallion, jasper ware (stoneware) dipped blue, oval plaque with applied moulded white jasper ware bust in relief in profile to left of Sir Joseph Banks, English naturalist; legend impressed; gilt metal frame with suspension loop. Marked..
- Production date
- 1779 (modelled)
Length: 10.80 inches
- Curator's comments
A bill from John Flaxman for 'The Portrait of Mr. Banks modelled in Clay...' is dated August 1779 and it is thought this is probably the portrait referred to by Josiah Wedgwood in a letter dated September 1779. (See Reilly and Savage 1973, p.56).
One of a small series of portrait plaques dating from 1779. The only one not in the Museum collection is that of Dr Solander, who actually worked in the Museum.
Jenkins & Sloan 1996
Banks was a naturalist and President of the Royal Society from 1778. He received a prolonged correspondence from Sir William on all matters of scientific interest relating to the Bay of Naples, and especially the activities of Mount Vesuvius.
This plaque was made as one of the series of large portrait plaques of 'eminent moderns', which included: Hamilton; Robert Boyle (1627-91), the natural philosopher and chemist; Daniel Charles Solander (1736-82), the Swedish naturalist; Benjamin Franklin (1706-90), the American statesman; and Isaac Newton (1642-1727), natural philosopher and mathematician (this last was to form a pair with that of Dr Joseph Priestley (1733-1804)).
LITERATURE: Reilly and Savage, p.56; Dawson, p.79, fig. 64.
- On display (G46/dc18)
- Acquisition date
- Britain, Europe and Prehistory
- Registration number