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Ramsay painted and presented this portrait to the Foundling Hospital in 1747. Richard Mead, a prominent London physician, was both court doctor to George II and medical consultant to the Foundling Hospital. Mead assisted Thomas Coram in making contact with influential supporters for his campaign to establish the Hospital. Mead went on to serve as a Hospital Governor. He lived in a house on Great Ormond Street in which he amassed a vast collection of paintings, sculptures, manuscripts, coins and gems which he made accessible to various scholars, scientists and artists of the day, including Allan Ramsay. Mead gave Ramsay letters of introduction when he left England to study in Italy (Mead had also studied there in the 1690s). Mead further promoted Ramsay’s career when he returned to London in 1738.
oil on canvas
H 236.2 x W 144.8 cm
presented by the artist, 1747