James Craggs the younger (d.1721), Secretary of State
James Craggs the younger (d.1721), Secretary of State
James Craggs the younger (d.1721), Secretary of State
James Craggs the younger (d.1721), Secretary of State
James Craggs the younger (d.1721), Secretary of State
James Craggs the younger (d.1721), Secretary of State
James Craggs the younger (d.1721), Secretary of State

Image credit: Sir John Soane’s Museum

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James Craggs was one of the Secretaries of State in the British government and a friend of the poet Alexander Pope, who contributed the epitaph for his monument. The monument itself was designed by the architect James Gibbs and the pose of this figure, cross-legged and leaning on a vase, was the first in eighteenth-century England to derive directly from classical Roman sources – possibly antique statues Gibbs had seen while working in Rome under the architect Carlo Fontana, or perhaps figures reproduced in Montfaucon’s 'L'Antiquité Expliquée' of 1719. The Italian sculptor, Guelfi, although working in England, never met Craggs and had to work from 'two paintings and a print'. Disputes over the quality of the likeness were probably what led to the severing of the face from this terracotta model and its replacement with a wooden detachable face.

Sir John Soane’s Museum

London

Title

James Craggs the younger (d.1721), Secretary of State

Date

1720s

Medium

terracotta & wood

Measurements

H 49 x W 27 x D 18 cm

Accession number

MP190

Acquisition method

purchased by Sir John Soane, 1821

Work type

Statue

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Sir John Soane’s Museum

13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London, Greater London WC2A 3BP England

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