At The Holburne Museum you will find a beautiful and fascinating art collection in one of Bath’s great buildings, the former Sydney Hotel. The Museum sits within its own grounds at the end of Great Pulteney Street and has been beautifully restored. The new extension with its galleries and Garden Café opens onto Sydney Gardens.
The Holburne Museum first opened its doors to the public in 1893 and moved to its current home at the end of Great Pulteney Street in 1916. The Collection includes over 250 British and continental oil paintings, mainly from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
The heart of the Collection was formed by Sir Thomas William Holburne (1793–1874), a naval officer and Baronet who lived at 10 Cavendish Crescent in Bath with his three unmarried sisters. Two hundred paintings remain at the Museum from Holburne’s collection, which also includes important seventeenth- and eighteenth-century silver and porcelain, Italian maiolica and bronzes, portrait miniatures, books and furniture.
The picture collection has been greatly enhanced during the twentieth century with bequests, gifts and purchases including eighteenth-century British portraits by Ramsay, Stubbs and Gainsborough. Most recently, the Holburne has acquired much of the Somerset Maugham collection of eighteenth-century theatrical portraits, including five by Zoffany.
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