• Portrait of William Clayton of Harleyford House, near Marlow, Buckinghamshire -
    Price on request

    Half-length, facing right

    Inscribed with identity of sitter on backboard

    Black and red chalk on laid paper with a circular crowned watermark 20.3 by 18.2 cm., 8 by 7 in.

    William Clayton (c.1718 – 1783) was the second son of Sir William

    Clayton 1st Baronet. He was educated at Middle Temple and became an

    M.P., serving Bletchingly, Surrey, between 1745 and 1761 and then Great

    Marlow, Buckinghamshire, until 1783. He married three times, finally to Lady Louisa Fermor, daughter of the 1st Earl Pomfret. His son, also William succeeded to the Baronetcy on the death of his cousin Sir Robert, 3rd Baronet.


    The current Harleyford House was built for the sitter in 1753 by Sir Robert Taylor (1714 – 1788), one of the leading architects of the day, who later designed the Bank of England.

    The present, elegant drawing appears on stylistic grounds, the style of the sitter’s costume and the age of the sitter, to date to the mid-1740s and although the attribution of the artist is as yet uncertain, the artist’s ability is evident in the sophisticated and confident handling. Attributions to Bartholomew Dandridge and Marcellus Laroon have been suggested.

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