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Lot Number: 107
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Estimate Range: $2,000 - $3,000
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Choice “Lansdowne” Engraving of President George Washington After the Original Painting by Gilbert Stuart

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Published February 1, 1800 Federal Period, “Lansdowne Portrait of George Washington”, as Engraved by James Heath (1757-1834), Historical Engraver to his Majesty and to his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, London. Copy Right secured in the United States, Framed, Choice Extremely Fine.

Gilbert Stuart's 1797 “Lansdowne” Portrait, also known as the “Lansdowne Portrait of George Washington” is one of the most famous and iconic portraits of George Washington, as the first President of the United States. A celebrated image of Washington, the Lansdowne Portrait, a large portrait with one version is hanging in the East Room of the White House. During the burning of Washington by British troops in the War of 1812, this picture was saved through the intervention of First Lady Dolley Madison. Gilbert painted 12 versions of the portrait throughout his life. Most of the U.S. states feature a copy of the painting hanging in their State Capitol.

This fine quality large size engraving is titled, “GENERAL WASHINGTON” by engraver James Heath, after the original painting by Stuart, measuring 25.5 tall x 17.5” wide (by sight), professionally matted and framed to 33.25”x 25.25” viewed through special UV Plexiglas, Extremely Fine. This example may be a PROOF copy as it is printed on a heavy wove sheet with the outline of the original engraved plate seen faintly embossed (not removed from its frame). An excellent sharp crisp printing, never folded, in near pristine condition but for some faint scattered tone only in the fully wide blank margins. James Heath was a British engraver known for his skillful reproductions of notable artworks, including portraits of prominent figures. He is particularly famous for this engraved reproduction of Gilbert Stuart's “Lansdowne Portrait” of George Washington. A wonderful example for display. The text in the lower portion below Washington’s portrait reads:

“GENERAL WASHINGTON. --- Painted by Gabriel Stuart 1797. - Engraved by James Heath Historical Engraver to his Majesty, and to his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, from the original Picture in the Collection of the Marquis of Lansdowne. -- Published February 1, 1800 by Jas Heath No 42 Newman Street Messrs Boydells Cheapside & J. P. Thompson. Great Street, London. Copy Right secured in the United States, according to Law.”


The “Lansdowne Portrait” of President Washington was commissioned by William Petty, 1st Marquess of Lansdowne, in 1796. The purpose of the commission was to create a portrait of George Washington as a gift to outgoing President Washington from the United States Senate.

The painting is a full-length portrait, showing Washington standing in his presidential regalia, with his right hand resting on a Ceremonial Sword and his left hand holding a rolled-up document, likely a reference to the U.S. Constitution.

Gilbert Stuart, a renowned American portraitist, was commissioned to paint the Lansdowne Portrait. Stuart was famous for his portraits of many prominent figures of the American Revolution and early American history including many displayed in the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol building.

The painting was presented to George Washington in May 1796. It was highly praised for its elegance and the dignified portrayal of Washington.

In addition to the painting, a popular engraving was made based on Stuart's portrait. The engraving was produced by William S. Leney, an American engraver, and it became widely distributed throughout the United States. The engraving helped to further popularize the image of Washington and became an enduring symbol of American patriotism.

The Lansdowne Portrait is considered one of the most important and iconic images of George Washington. It has been reproduced countless times in various forms, including on currency, postage stamps, and other national symbols. The image continues to hold significant cultural and historical importance in the United States.
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Lot Number: 107
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Estimate Range: $2,000 - $3,000
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