Grand Touring

A Swagger Portrait


This portrait was reputedly once owned by Sir James Bland Burges (1752-1824) and is traditionally believed to depict a gentleman of that family. Burges was an author, a poet, a barrister and MP. As a young man he embarked on a Grand Tour and had his portrait painted in oils by Pietro Labruzzi in Rome in 1774. Well-connected, Burges was a patron of Byron; he married three times.

Painted with swagger in the Grand Tour style, the portrait shows a confident and stylish gentleman in a powdered wig, grey collarless coat and flamboyant royal blue mantel. The portrait is set in a rose gold frame that is enclosed on the reverse. Anecdotally, this miniature was rescued from a house fire which gutted Beaufort Park, once home to Sir James Burges.

Item Ref. 7267

Size: framed, 53 x 47mm

Provenance: Sir James Bland Burges