- William James Müller 1812–1845
- Oil paint on canvas
- Support: 921 x 1840 mm
- Presented by Holbrook Gaskell 1896
Not on display
The ability to convey character in paint was prized by 18th-century collectors, and Hogarth appears to have used this picture to advertise his skill. It hung in his studio, where it would have served to demonstrate his talent at portraiture. This interest in the portrayal of temperament also reflected a taste for 17th-century Dutch genre pictures and the depiction of social types. Hogarth’s attention to facial features demonstrates his engagement with conventional ideas of physiognomy, which had been in circulation since the Middle Ages.
Gallery label, March 2011