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The Fourdrinier Family

Photo credit: National Portrait Gallery, London

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A Huguenot entrepreneur, Henry Fourdrinier senior (1730–1799) was a wealthy paper-maker and wholesale stationer. He is shown seated in the middle of his family with his sons Henry junior (1766–1854), in red, and Sealy (1774–1847), standing, in green. In 1802, the brothers employed the inventor Bryan Donkin to design a machine for making continuous paper at greatly increased speeds. At a Parliamentary hearing in 1837, Marc Isambard Brunel called the Fourdriniers' machine 'one of the most splendid inventions of the age'. The family are probably shown in their garden in Putney with a patriotic view of Windsor Castle added in the distance. The inscribed monumental urn commemorates their deceased wife and mother, Jemima (1730–1781).

National Portrait Gallery, London

London


Date

c.1786

Medium

oil on copper

Measurements

H 46 x W 61.5 cm

Accession number

6091

Acquisition method

Purchased, 1990

Work type

Painting


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National Portrait Gallery, London

St Martin’s Place, London, Greater London WC2H 0HE England

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