Show me:
and
Clear all filters

  • 25 items Explore
  • 38 items
  • 25 items Explore
  • 48 items
  • 89 items
  • 3,458 items Explore
  • 97 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 4 items
  • 42 items
  • 11,032 items Explore
  • 209 items Explore
  • 1,235 items Explore
  • 8,509 items Explore
  • 5,049 items Explore
  • 72 items Explore
  • 128 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 10,647 items Explore
  • 13,625 items Explore
  • 4,619 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 5 items
  • 150 items Explore
  • 2,020 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 4,725 items Explore
  • 24 items Explore
  • 439 items Explore
  • 19,174 items Explore
  • 34 items Explore
  • 1,903 items Explore
  • 1,111 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 5,320 items Explore
  • 455 items Explore
  • 29 items
  • 920 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 8 items
  • 19,085 items Explore
  • 787 items Explore
  • 19 items
  • 73 items Explore
  • 33 items
  • 800 items
  • 25 items
  • 61 items
  • 28 items
  • 303 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 44 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 2 items
  • 145 items
  • 2 items
  • 7 items
  • 121 items Explore
  • 119 items
  • 1 items
  • 1,020 items Explore
  • 820 items
  • 95 items
  • 27 items
  • 7 items
  • 27,204 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,826 items Explore
  • 1,528 items Explore
  • 403 items
  • 158 items Explore
  • 9,669 items Explore
  • 9,688 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 1 items
  • 4 items
  • 39 items
  • 3 items
  • 4 items
  • 6,055 items Explore
  • 6,100 items Explore
  • 4,056 items Explore
  • 1,514 items Explore
  • 929 items Explore
  • 3,485 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 312 items
  • 1 items
  • 1 items
  • 3,354 items Explore
  • 20 items Explore
  • 335 items Explore
  • 794 items Explore
  • 1,111 items Explore
  • 510 items Explore
  • 917 items Explore
  • 1,138 items
  • 89 items
  • 126 items Explore
  • 6,953 items Explore
  • 170 items
  • 310 items
  • 7 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 27 items
  • 61 items
  • 300 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 2,919 items Explore
  • 1,515 items Explore
  • 82 items
  • 43 items
  • 19,433 items Explore
  • 1,222 items Explore
  • 138 items
  • 839 items Explore
  • 32 items
  • 1 items
  • 132 items Explore
  • 24 items
  • 40 items
  • 20 items
  • 3 items
  • 252 items
  • 314 items
  • 859 items Explore
  • 1,897 items
  • 350 items Explore
  • 2,424 items
  • 2,524 items
  • 6 items
  • 3 items
  • 3 items
  • 4,391 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 34,009 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,293 items Explore
  • 274 items Explore
  • 8,061 items Explore
  • 31 items
  • 25 items
  • 724 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 65 items
  • 160 items
  • 52 items
  • 21,466 items Explore
  • 915 items
  • 18 items
  • 22,047 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 2,331 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1,051 items Explore
  • 59 items
  • 499 items
  • 3,289 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 174 items
  • 453 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 21 items
  • 90 items Explore
  • 76 items
  • 289 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 6 items
  • 128 items
  • 295 items
  • 752 items
  • 878 items
  • 1 items
  • 369 items Explore
  • 273 items Explore
  • 11,414 items Explore
  • 760 items Explore
  • 6,023 items Explore
  • 10 items
  • 6,965 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 5,314 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 3,728 items Explore
  • 9,178 items Explore
  • 7,706 items Explore
  • 201 items
  • 19 items
  • 142 items
  • 7 items
  • 990 items Explore
  • 18 items
  • 4,199 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 4 items
  • 1,096 items Explore
  • 224 items
  • 1 items
  • 3,491 items Explore
  • 20 items
  • 696 items Explore
  • 18 items
  • 134 items
  • 3,511 items Explore
  • 13,445 items Explore
  • 2,715 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 8 items
  • 9,289 items Explore
  • 37 items
  • 2 items
  • 21,326 items Explore
  • 131 items
  • 38 items
  • 13,066 items Explore
  • 3,311 items Explore
  • 2,133 items Explore
  • 163 items
  • 41,102 items Explore
  • 639 items Explore
  • 415 items
  • 23,291 items Explore
  • 218 items
  • 3 items
  • 1 items
  • 20 items
  • 30 items
  • 197 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 217 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 13,111 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 10,261 items
  • 9 items
  • 10 items
  • 14 items
  • 25 items
  • 4,545 items Explore
  • 918 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1 items
  • 1 items
  • 220 items
  • 702 items Explore
  • 42 items
  • 2,283 items Explore
  • 1,661 items Explore
  • 15 items
  • 1,913 items Explore
  • 151 items
  • 84 items
  • 771 items Explore
  • 3,300 items Explore
  • 42 items
  • 22 items
  • 12 items
  • 10,644 items Explore
  • 22,690 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 2 items
  • 1 items
  • 2 items
  • 1,373 items
  • 180 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 8 items
  • 92 items
  • 13,045 items Explore
  • 3,567 items Explore
  • 2,646 items Explore
  • 4,761 items Explore
  • 22 items
  • 45 items
  • 1 items
  • 6,897 items Explore
  • 4,792 items Explore
  • 271 items Explore
  • 2,300 items Explore
  • 2,595 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 1,862 items Explore
  • 54 items
  • 223 items Explore
  • 443 items Explore
  • 5,883 items Explore
  • 8,794 items Explore
  • 1,846 items Explore
  • 5,756 items Explore
  • 3,338 items Explore
  • 11,058 items Explore
  • 86 items
  • 11 items
  • 1,643 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 24 items
  • 51 items
  • 3 items
  • 1 items
  • 2,302 items Explore
  • 620 items Explore
  • 62 items
  • 17 items
  • 151 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 87 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 464 items
  • 996 items
  • 3,600 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 9,396 items Explore
  • 48 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 42 items
  • 3 items
  • 13,701 items Explore
  • 1,188 items Explore
  • 92 items
  • 10,562 items Explore
  • 1,006 items Explore
  • 1,925 items
  • 6,041 items Explore
  • 21 items
  • 12,944 items Explore
  • 1,417 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 9,561 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 16,305 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 1,670 items Explore
  • 175 items
  • 58 items
  • 5,733 items Explore
  • 8,787 items Explore
  • 48 items
  • 25 items
  • 2 items
  • 59 items
  • 3 items
  • 7,383 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 399 items Explore
  • 13 items
  • 4 items
  • 3 items
  • 6 items
  • 4 items
  • 103 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 5 items
  • 480 items
  • 183 items Explore
  • 8,394 items Explore
  • 55 items
  • 23,519 items Explore
  • 7,348 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 26 items
  • 3,632 items Explore
  • 454 items
  • 8 items
  • 326 items Explore
  • 12,688 items Explore
  • 55 items
  • 20 items
  • 7 items
  • 4 items
  • 315 items Explore
  • 451 items
  • 184 items
  • 3,620 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 1,228 items Explore
  • 2,370 items Explore
  • 732 items Explore
  • 36 items
  • 1,146 items Explore
  • 97 items Explore
  • 42 items
  • 247 items Explore
  • 71,495 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,064 items Explore
  • 2,844 items Explore
  • 28 items
  • 3,487 items Explore
  • 1,837 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 17,033 items Explore
  • 5,504 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 624 items Explore
  • 85 items
  • 464 items
  • 39 items
  • 76 items
  • 29 items
  • 336 items
  • 3 items
  • 41 items
  • 1,176 items Explore
  • 109 items
  • 805 items
  • 30 items
  • 10,725 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 13 items
  • 1,566 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 266 items
  • 16,833 items Explore
  • 78 items
  • 17 items
  • 1 items
  • 10 items
  • 6 items
  • 324 items
  • 2 items
  • 628 items Explore
  • 1,594 items Explore
  • 1,033 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 261 items

Select a time period

Or choose a specific year

Clear all filters

The Death of General James Wolfe (1727-1759)

Benjamin West PRA (Swarthmore 1738 - London 1820)

Category

Art / Oil paintings

Date

1779 (signed and dated)

Materials

Oil on canvas

Measurements

1525 x 2160 mm (60 x 85 in)

Place of origin

England

Order this image

Collection

Ickworth, Suffolk (Accredited Museum)

NT 851783

Caption

General Wolfe died in 1759 on the Heights of Abraham in the battle which resulted in the capture of Quebec and consequently of Canada from the French. Wolfe was a friend of the Hervey family and an intimate of John, Lord Hervey’s daughter, Lepel, Lady Mulgrave (1723-80). His ADC, Captain Hervey Smyth, shown to the left of the dying man, was a grandson of the 1st Earl. This, the fourth version of the painting, was done for the Earl-Bishop, who described Wolfe as: ‘My military saint, who deserves much more to be canoniz’d than any religious one I have ever read of.’ The first version of the subject, which was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1771, was bought by Richard, later 1st Earl, Grosvenor. Presented by his descendant, the 2nd Duke of Westminster, to the Canadian War Memorials in 1918, it is now in the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa.

Summary

Oil painting on canvas, The Death of General James Wolfe (1727-1759) by Benjamin West PRA (Swarthmore 1738 - London 1820), signed and dated: bottom left: B. West 1779. Scene of battle in background, and harbour on right with frigates at anchor. Dark grey overcast sky on right, lighter clouds on left. Figures in foreground around Wolfe in brilliant red, green or blue uniforms - colours very brilliant. Blue, pink and grey standard above Wolfe's head. This wholly imaginary scene depicts the following characters: the surgeon Robert Adair holds a handkerchief to Wolfe's heart, supporting Wolfe on the other side are Captain Sir Hervey Smythe, 3rd Bt (1734-1811) an ADC and Colonel Williamson, holding the flag is Lieutenant Henry Browne. The group on the left, from left to right, are Sir William Howe, later 5th Viscount Howe, Lieutenant-Colonel Simon Fraser, Master of Loval, Captain Debbieg, Brigadier Robert Monckton and Colonel Napier. On the right stands one of Wolfe's servants and a grenadier. The pensive Indian is totally imaginary.The 1770 prime version which was the first painting the artist exhibited in public (RA 1771) is in the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa.

Provenance

Possibly commissioned by the Earl-Bishop (Frederick, 4th Earl of Bristol & Bishop of Derry) and sent to Ballyscullion, 1802; acquired by Frederick William Hervey, 1st Marquess of Bristol (1769-1859) (his handwritten list of around 1837); thence by inheritance and descent to Frederick William, 4th Marquess of Bristol (1863–1951), at whose death, valued for probate; accepted by HM Treasury in lieu of tax and transferred to the National Trust in 1956

Credit line

Ickworth, The Bristol Collection (acquired through the National Land Fund and transferred to The National Trust in 1956)

Marks and inscriptions

West, Benjamin

Makers and roles

Benjamin West PRA (Swarthmore 1738 - London 1820), artist

Exhibition history

American Adversaries West and Copley in a Transatlantic World, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston , 2013 - 2014, no.61

References

Von Erffa & Staley 1986 Helmut von Erffa & Allen Staley, The Paintings of Benjamin West, New Haven & London 1986, pp.214-15, no.96 Laskin and Pantazzi 1987 Myron Laskin, Jr. and Michael Pantazzi (ed), Catalogue of the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa. European and American Painting, Sculpture, and Decorative Arts, 1300-1800, Ottawa, 1987, Vol.1, pp.299-305 Solkin 2015 David H. Solkin, Art in Britain 1660 - 1815, Pelican History of Art, Yale University Press, 2015, p. 163-4, fig. 164 Artist and Empire, Facing Britain's Imperial Past (ed. A. Smith, D. B. Brown & C. Jacobi), Tate Britain, London, 25 November 2015 - 10 April 2016, p. 90-91

View more details