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Thomas Phillips

(1770—1845) portrait painter


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(b Dudley, Worcestershire [now West Midlands], 18 Oct. 1770; d London, 20 Apr. 1845). English painter. He began his career with ambitions as a history painter but he turned to portraiture and is best known for depicting some of the outstanding literary figures of his day, including William Blake (1807, NPG, London), Lord Byron in Albanian costume (1813, NPG), and Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1821, Dove Cottage and Wordsworth Mus., Grasmere). T. S. R. Boase (English Art: 1800–1870, 1959) writes that ‘he caught as no other the noble gloom of the romantic pose and the inspired intensity of the creative imagination’. Phillips was professor of painting at the Royal Academy, 1825–32. His son and pupil Henry Wyndham Phillips (1820–68) was also a portrait painter.

From The Oxford Dictionary of Art in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Art.


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