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George John (1758–1834), 2nd Earl Spencer

Photo credit: The Royal Institution

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Notes

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George John Spencer, 2nd Earl Spencer, was a Whig politician and held various posts in government. He was also a Knight of the Garter, an order of chivalry which is made up of the monarch, the heir to the throne and 24 companions. His rank is shown in the portrait by the star which he wears.

Spencer had a great interest in literature and early printing, amassing a collection of some 40,000 books. Alongside this he was President of the Royal Institution between 1813 and 1825.

The painting of this portrait, with the intention of it being donated to the Royal Institution, was organised by the artist and Michael Faraday in 1832. The elderly Spencer agreed to sit but due to his bad health the portrait took over a year to complete.

The Royal Institution

London


Date

1833

Medium

oil on canvas

Measurements

H 78 x W 65.3 cm

Accession number

RIIC 0065

Acquisition method

presented by the artist, 1833

Work type

Painting


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Normally on display at

The Royal Institution

21 Albermarle Street, London, Greater London W1S 4BS England

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