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Commerce, or the Triumph of the Thames

Photo credit: Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce

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Notes

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Unlike the previous three paintings, the fourth in the sequence 'The Progress of Human Knowledge and Culture' depicts a modern scene, albeit in a characteristically classical way, by personifying a river as a benevolent deity. A majestic Father Thames seated on a throne, steering himself with one hand and holding a compass in the other. Above him is the Roman deity Mercury, a god of trade analogous with the Greek Hermes, a patron saint of travellers and communicators.

Royal Society of Arts

London


Date

1777–1801

Medium

oil on canvas

Measurements

H 360 x W 462 cm

Accession number

RSA022

Acquisition method

commissioned for the Society's Meeting Room, c.1777

Work type

Painting


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Normally on display at

Royal Society of Arts

8 John Adam Street, London, Greater London WC2N 6EZ England

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