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Portrait Of A Merchant Navy Captain C.1775 - Attributed To Lemuel Francis Abbott.

"Portrait Of A Merchant Navy Captain C.1775 - Attributed To Lemuel Francis Abbott."
A richly coloured and highly decorative 18th oil on canvas portrait of a dashing seafaring gentleman attributed to Lemuel Francis Abbott (1760-1803)
The elegant sitter is pictured half length against a sea and sky background leaning upon a stone ledge. He holds a rolled map and with his body and head slightly inclined, he gazes at us with the most knowing of expressions. In the distance ships can be glimpsed.
The as yet unknown gentleman sports the traditional costume of high status seafaring gentlemen the period. His costume consists of a deep blue coat which is decorated with gold lace around his cuffs and matching buttons formed from gold thread ‘arranged’ around a disc of bone or ivory. Underneath this he wears a white shirt with ruffled collar and cuffs and a scarlet waistcoat.
Dark blue was a popular colour for all maritime ‘officers’, military or civilian, because it referred to the ‘blue' ocean but it was also a serviceable colour and did not show the dirt or any stains from tar, pitch or grease that were commonplace on a ship of any type in that era.
Clearly this portrait was executed by a most accomplished hand, and one who relished the exploration of colour. Of particular note here is the bravura use of lead white to heighten the costume, the well preserved pigments, and also the very fine rendering of the sitter’s hand. This is the sensitively rendered record of a real character!
Lemuel Francis Abbott (1760-1803) Abott was a renowned portrait painter whose image of 1st Viscount Horatio Nelson (currently hanging in the Terracotta Room of Number 10 Downing Street) was one of his most well known, as well as painting other top literary figures and naval officers of the day. He was born in Leicestershire and studied under Francis Hayman in London and later Joseph Wright of Derby. His career was interrupted by insanity in 1798, from which he never recovered.
This work is in an excellent state of conservation and is presented ready to hang in a fine hand carved and gilded English rococo frame with shell cartouches.
We are grateful to Doctor Andrew Cormack for his assistance in the analysis of the sitter’s costume.

Higher resolution images on request.
Worldwide shipping available.

Canvas : 30” x 25" / 76cm x 63cm.
Frame: 36.5" x 32" / 93cm x 81cm.

Price : $9,270
Period: 18th century
Style: Other Style
Origin: England
Material : Oil painting
Condition : Very good condition
Width : 81cm
Height : 93cm
Depth : 2cm

Reference : 1804
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