William Pulteney (1684–1764), Earl of Bath

Image credit: Victoria Art Gallery

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Reputedly the wealthiest man in England, William Pulteney invested money in new houses in Georgian Bath.

He was born William Johnstone, but after marring heiress Frances Pulteney, he changed his name. The Pulteney family owned estates in Bathwick, just outside the city centre, across the River Avon. As there was no bridge, the land was of little use for development. Pulteney commissioned architect Robert Adam to design the now famous Pulteney Bridge, which made development of Bathwick a highly profitable project.

Bath Guildhall, Victoria Art Gallery



William Pulteney (1684–1764), Earl of Bath


oil on canvas


H 75 x W 62 cm

Accession number

BATVG : P : 1991.15

Acquisition method

purchased with the assistance of the Victoria and Albert Museum Purchase Grant Fund and the National Art Collections Fund; on loan from the Victoria Art Gallery, Bath

Work type



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Bath Guildhall, Victoria Art Gallery

High Street, Bath, Somerset BA1 5AW England

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