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Ann Wardley
Ann Wardley • 1 year ago

"Portrait of William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham" by Jean André Rouquet at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London - More commonly known as William Pitt the Elder (to distinguish him from his son William Pitt the Younger), this was the British Secretary of State during the Seven Years War and many victories have been attributed to his policies. This is why, for instance, when the British took Fort Duquesne from the French, they renamed it Fort Pitt - now the city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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William Pitt, later known as "Pitt the Elder", painted by William Hoare in 1754. This was the year he married Lady Hester Grenville.

1783-1784 British Portrait medallion of William Pitt the Younger at the Museum of London, London - From the curators' comments: "William Pitt the Younger became the youngest prime minister ever at the age of 24. He had only entered Parliament in 1781....Pitt remained in office continuously until 1801, a period which saw the French Revolution, the start of the Napoleonic Wars and the Act of Union between Britain and Ireland."

Pitt's father, William Pitt the Elder, 1st Earl of Chatham (1708-78). Detail of portrait by Richard Brompton, 1772.

Bust of William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham, by Joseph Wilton, c1766.

John Pitt, 2nd Earl of Chatham, by George Romney, scanned from 'House of Pitt' by Sir Tresham Lever (1947). This is the portrait on which Jacqui Reiter's excellent drawing is based ( It hangs, or used to hang, at Chevening, formerly the home of William Pitt's biographer Earl Stanhope.

  • Stephenie W

    John and William did look very similar, didn't they? Are there any portraits of Lady Harriot in Lever's book? I've yet to see it.

  • Independent Whig

    @Stephenie Michelle: No, none of Harriot, nor of Hester. Plenty of other sundry Pitts though. I'd love to see this portrait in colour, but a quick online search didn't find it anywhere. With your investigative skills, you might have better luck!

  • Jacqui Reiter

    Ha ha! I found the eyes quite obvious. John and william did not have the same eyes at all. Harriot I've seen nothing of except the portrait in the Headlam book-- not very flattering but I think it shows she took strongly after the Grenvilles. I don't think I have seen any authoritatively attributed pictures of Hester, the closest being the one in the latest Hester Stanhope book. Jc obviously just in the Copley painting.

  • Independent Whig

    @Jacqui Reiter: Looking again at the portraits of John, I'd say his resemblance to Chatham is most obvious in the Hoppner. But the nose is a Grenville nose in all of them! Regarding Hester and Harriot, there's a pic of each on this board - are they the ones you've seen? Btw, I came across what I presume must be your Pitt family tree site today. Lovely picture of Hester Grenville! Will you be adding any more to it?

  • Jacqui Reiter

    Oh goodness, that ancient website? I really would take it down except I can't hack into my own account. :-/ yes, all those pictures are the ones I had seen. I've pinned all my pitt family portraits to my board now.

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One of the two main characters, William Pitt the Younger (1759-1806). Here portrayed by George Romney in about 1783, when he was 23/4. Incredibly he was probably already a cabinet minister when this portrait was painted.

William Wyndham Grenville, 1st Baron Grenville (1759-1834) by John Hoppner, 1800. Pitt's cousin and close ally, Grenville served as both Home Secretary and Foreign Secretary under him. He became Prime Minister for a short period after Pitt's death.

Drawing of William Pitt the Elder by William Hoare

"James Murray" by an unknown artist (1765-1770) at the National Portrait Gallery, London - Murray was the one of Wolfe's brigadier generals to stay behind as commander of the troops in Quebec after the city was successfully taken in 1759. After the conclusion of the Seven Years' War, he was appointed Governor of the newly British colony, but was recalled in 1766 (although he would nominally hold the post until 1768) due to conflicts with the new English-American merchants who settled there.

"Portrait of an Officer of the 15th Regiment of Dragoons" by Tilly Kettle (1768) at the National Army Museum, London - From the curators' comments: "The battle honour 'Emsdorf', seen on the front of this officer's helmet, was the first ever to be awarded to a British regiment....The battle honour was awarded for the regiment's part in the victory at the Battle of Emsdorf (1760) during the Seven Years War (1756-1763)."

Portrait Miniature on Ivory of Thomas Jefferson's Daughter