Richard CoswayPortrait of a Gentleman, his Wife and Sister, in the Character of Fortitude introducing Hope as the Companion to Distress ('The Witts Family Group') c.1775

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Artwork details

Artist
Richard Cosway (1742‑1821)
Title
Portrait of a Gentleman, his Wife and Sister, in the Character of Fortitude introducing Hope as the Companion to Distress ('The Witts Family Group')
Date c.1775
MediumOil paint on canvas
Dimensionsunconfirmed: 1180 x 1040 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Purchased 1995
Reference
T06969
Not on display

Summary


Portrait of a Gentleman, his Wife and Sister, in the Character of Fortitude introducing Hope as the Companion to Distress (`The Witts Family Group') circa 1775
T06969

This group portrait was probably commissioned by the widow of Broome Witts (1738-69), a wholesale linen-draper in the City of London, as a memorial on his death after only five years of marriage. The picture depicts three members of the family as allegorical figures dressed in classical style and supported by symbols alluding to their personifications. In the centre is Broome Witts as 'Fortitude'. His strength is indicated by the classical column against which he stands, his wisdom by the figure of Minerva, the Roman goddess of wisdom, atop the column… (read more)

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