Object Image

The Family of John, 3rd Duke of Atholl

The 3rd Duke and family by Johann Zoffany (1733-1810) can be seen here on the banks of the River Tay.

It is believed that local artist Charles Steuart painted the background, the canvas was then despatched to London for the portraits to be added. Zoffany was a celebrated artist patronised by royals and known for his ability to capture the sitters' character.

The painting's invoice states that Zoffany charged 20 guineas per person, although he did not charge for the family pet lemur (Tom) who can be seen in the tree. It is also interesting to note the pentimento effect at the legs of the Duke and of the Marquis beside him, but even more noticeable by the swan.

The current Duke is descended from the tree-climbing 3rd son, later to become the Bishop of Rochester.

Oil on canvas

Where you'll find this

Blair Castle & Gardens

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