Richard Bull (Biographical details)

Richard Bull (collector; British; Male; 1725 - 1805)

Also known as

Bull, Richard


The White House, Ongar, Essex North Court, Isle of Wight


Collector and amateur draughtsman; son of Sir Richard Bull and his wife Elizabeth; married Mary Alexander, two daughters, Catherine Susanna (d.1795) and Elizabeth (d.1809); MP for Newport, Cornwall 1756-80, but devoted energies to collecting prints and drawings, and 'grangerizing' (Pinkerton lists 45 such titles); he sold his Granger to Lord Mount Stuart in 1774 (now in the Huntington Library in 36 volumes where known as the Bute Granger). His estate passed through his daughter Elizabeth to his stepson R H Alexander Bennet (q.v.); Bull's drawings and prints were sold (anonymously by a descendant called Donaldson) at Sotheby's, 23 May 1881 and six following days. The BM purchased many lots at the sale (1881,0611.131 to 354).


Horace Walpole, Anecdotes of Painting and Engraving in England, 1782;
Horace Walpole, Strawberry Hill; pp. 20,30,74 & 84;
Horace Walpole, Letters; XI, p.451, & XII, pp. 150, 359-60 & 385-6
Chaloner Smith, III, pp. 1289 & 1351-2
WP Courtney, 'Richard Bull', in 'Notes and Queries' 11 series VII, March 1913, pp. 170-71
J M Pinkerton, Book Collector (XXVII) 1978, pp.41-59
E. Croft-Murray, unpublished notes in the Dept. Prints and Drawings, BM
Parts of collection included in Swinburne sale Sotheby's 29.iv.1889; and Sotheby's 20.iii.1973.