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Jack Nicholas (b.1720), Kitchen Porter, Aged 71

Photo credit: National Trust Images

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This is a full-length portrait of a kitchen porter, aged 71. He is standing in a park next to an outsized column, a basket on his arm, taking snuff. It is noted that he was 'deficient in intellect, defective in form'.

There are two sets of servant portraits at Erddig and this is one of the first set. Individual portraits of servants are not uncommon, but the sets at Erddig, which established a tradition later carried on in the form of photographs, may be unique. The first set was painted in the 1790s for Philip Yorke I, who wrote and published the 'Crude-Ditties' accompanying them. The second set was painted for his son and successor, Simon Yorke II, who never had himself portrayed.




oil on canvas


H 114 x W 94 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

gift from Philip Yorke III along with the estate, house and other contents, 1973

Work type



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Normally on display at

National Trust, Erddig

Wrexham (Wrecsam) LL13 0YT Wales

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