Technique and condition
The painting is in oil paint on a plain-woven, linen canvas primed with an off-white, oil-bound ground. The thin, opaque paint was applied delicately, wet-in-wet with fine brushes. Alterations in the placing and position of some the figures are now just discernible as 'pentimenti': Jeremiah Ives was originally placed nearer to the central seated figure and John South Morse was nearer to the right edge. In his present position his pose has been altered at the right arm and feet. These changes would indicate that this is the earliest of the three versions.