- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
John Singleton Copley, American (Boston, MA 1738 - 1815 London, England)
Thomas Hancock (1703 - 1764)
Frame by Unidentified American Framemaker
- Thomas Hancock (1703-1764)
- Work Type
- Creation Place: North America, United States, Massachusetts, Boston
Level 3, Room 3500, Special Exhibitions Gallery
View this object's location on our interactive map
- Physical Descriptions
- Oil on canvas
- 242.7 x 150.9 cm (95 9/16 x 59 7/16 in.)
- Commissioned by the sitter's nephew, John Hancock, at the request of the College, 1764-1766.
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard University Portrait Collection, Gift of John Hancock, nephew of Thomas Hancock, to Harvard College, 1766
- Accession Year
- Object Number
- European and American Art
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- Publication History
Benjamin Peirce, A History of Harvard University, From its Foundation, in the Year 1636 to the Period of the American Revolution, Brown, Shattuck and Company (Cambridge, MA, 1833), p. 231
Augustus Thorndyke Perkins, A Sketch of the Life and a List of Some of the Works of John Singleton Copley, J. R. Osgood & Company (Boston, MA, 1873), p. 69
William Garrott Brown, A List of Portraits in the Various Buildings of Harvard University, Harvard University Library (Cambridge, MA, 1898), p. 21
Frank William Bayley, A Sketch of the Life and a List of Some of the Works of John Singleton Copley, The Garden Press, W. B. Libby (Boston, MA, 1910), p. 53
Frank William Bayley, The Life and Works of John Singleton Copley: Founded on the Work of Augustus Thorndike Perkins, The Taylor Press (Boston, MA, 1915), p. 138
Cuthbert Lee, Early American Portrait Painters: The Fourteen Principal Earliest Native-born Painters, Yale University Press (U.S.) (New Haven, CT, 1929), p. 74
Frank William Bayley, Five Colonial Artists of New England: Joseph Badger, Joseph Blackburn, John Singleton Copley, Robert Feke, John Smibert, Southworth Press (Boston, 1929), p. 221, ill.
Theodore Bolton and Henry Lorin Binsse, "John Singleton Copley", The Antiquarian (New York, NY, December 1930), pp. 116-118., p. 116
Louise Burroughs, "John Singleton Copley", The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin (1936), vol. 31, no. 12, pp. 251-258, p. 254
Royal Cortissoz, "The Art of Copley at the Metropolitan", New York Herald Tribune (New York, NY, December 27, 1936), sec. 7, p. 8, p. 8
Laura M. Huntsinger, Harvard Portraits: A Catalogue of Portrait Paintings at Harvard University, ed. Alan Burroughs, Harvard University Press (Cambridge, MA, 1936), pp. 67-68
Alan Burroughs, Limners and Likenesses: Three Centuries of American Painting, Harvard University Press (Cambridge, MA, 1936), pp. 67-68, fig. 55
Paintings of John Singleton Copley, exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, NY, 1936), p. 7, cat. 6
Fogg Art Museum, Fogg Art Museum Annual Report, 1936-1937 (Cambridge, MA, 1938), p. 17
Barbara N. Parker and Anne Bolling Wheeler, John Singleton Copley: American Portraits in Oil, Pastel and Miniature, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (Boston, MA, 1938), pp. 99-100, pl. 45
Historical Records Survey, Division of Professional and Service Projects, Works Progress Administration, American Portraits, 1620-1825, found in Massachusetts, Volumes 1 and 2, Historical Records Survey (Boston, MA, 1939), p. 188, cat. 964
Fogg Art Museum, Fogg Art Museum Annual Report, 1939-1940 (Cambridge, MA, 1941), p. 23
James Thomas Flexner, John Singleton Copley, Houghton Mifflin Company (Boston, 1948), pp. 28, 54, pl. 19
John Chamberlain, The Enterprising Americans: A Business History of the United States, Harper & Row (New York, 1962), ill. p. 8
Jules David Prown, John Singleton Copley, Harvard University Press (Cambridge, MA, 1966), vol. 1, pp. 30, 43-44, 108, 217, pl. 154
Louise Todd Ambler, Early Science at Harvard: Innovators and Their Instruments, 1765 - 1865, exh. cat., Fogg Art Museum (Cambridge, MA, December 1969-January 1970), pp. 2, 74, cat. 2
Alison Shepherd Lewis, "John Singleton Copley and American Full-Length Portraits: The Project of Harvard Hall" (1969), Unpublished, pp. 9-13, 17
Robert Plate, John Singleton Copley: America's First Great Artist, David McKay (New York, NY, 1969), p. 43
Fogg Art Museum, Fogg Art Museum Annual Report, 1969-1970 (Cambridge, MA, 1971), p. 10, ill. p. 11
Nina Fletcher Little, "Floor Coverings", American Art Journal (May 1975), vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 107-117, p. 112
Wendy Ann Cooper, "Paul Revere's Boston, 1735-1818", The Magazine Antiques (July 1975), vol. 108, pp. 80-93, cat. 41, ill.
Esther Forbes, Paul Revere and the World He Lived In, Book of the Month Club, Inc. (New York, NY, 1980), p. 113
Melvin Maddocks, The Seafarers: Atlantic Crossing, Time-Life Books, Inc. (Alexandria, VA, 1980), ill. p. 58
Trevor J. Fairbrother, "John Singleton Copley's Use of British Mezzotints for his American Portraits", Arts Magazine (March 1981), pp. 122-30, pp. 125-126, 128-129, fig. 12
Leo van Witsen, Costuming for Opera, Indiana University Press (Bloomington, IN, 1981), p. 55, ill.
Wayne Craven, Colonial American Portraiture, Cambridge University Press (U.K.) (Cambridge, England, 1986), pp. 339-341, fig. 160
Sandra Grindlay, "Harvard's Portraits: An American Treasure", Harvard University Art Museums Review (Fall 1992), vol. II, no. 1, pp. 6-7, p. 6
Morrison Heckscher and Leslie Greene Bowman, American Rococo, 1750-1775: Elegance in Ornament, exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, 1992), p. 138
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, "Furniture as Social History: Gender, Property and Memory in the Decorative Arts", American Furniture, Chipstone Foundation (Milwaukee, WI, 1995), pp. 39-68, pp. 48, 52, fig. 14
Carrie Rebora and Paul J. Staiti, John Singleton Copley in America, exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, NY, 1995), pp. 93, 156, 211, 221, 259, ill. p. 4
Elizabeth M. Kornhauser, American Paintings before 1945 in the Wadsworth Atheneum, Yale University Press (U.S.) (New Haven, CT, 1996), pp. 261-263, ill.
Susan Rather, "Carpenter, Tailor, Shoemaker, Artist: Copley and Portrait Painting around 1770", The Art Bulletin, College Art Association of America (New York, NY, June 1997), v. 79, pp. 269-90, p. 279
Harlow Giles Unger and John Wiley & Sons Ltd. (USA), John Hancock: Merchant King and American Patriot (New York, 2000), ill p. 18
John T. Bethell, Richard M. Hunt, and Robert Shenton, Harvard A to Z, Harvard University Press (Cambridge, MA, 2004), p. 276
Kimberly Orcutt, Process and Paradox: The Historical Pictures of John Singleton Copley, exh. cat., Harvard University Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2004), pp. 2-3, ill., 12
Beth Carver Wees and Medill Higgins Harvey, Early American Silver in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New Haven, 2013), ill. p. 269
Theodore E. Stebbins, Jr. and Melissa Renn, American Paintings at Harvard, Volume One: Paintings, Watercolors, and Pastels by Artists Born before 1826, Yale University Press and Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge and New Haven, 2014), pp. 22, 24,132-134, 426, cat. 83, ill.
Stephen J. Hornsby and Richard W. Judd, ed., Historical Atlas of Maine (Orono, Maine, 2015), part 1, plate 13 verso [unpaginated], repr.
Jonathan Shaw and Jennifer Carling, "The Lost Museum: Teachings of the Philosophy Chamber, Recreated", Harvard Magazine (Cambridge, MA, 2017), pp. 42-49, p. 42
Colleen Walsh, Reviving the Philosophy Chamber, Harvard Gazette (May 25, 2017), Vol. CXII, pp. 24-25, p. 25, repr.
Ethan Lasser, ed., The Philosophy Chamber: Art and Science in Harvard’s Teaching Cabinet, 1766–1820, exh. cat., Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2017), p. 71, Plate 7; pp. 17-19, p. 23 Fig. 14, p. 35 Fig. 25 in Ethan W. Lasser's "Harvard's Teaching Cabinet"; p. 57 in María Dolores Sánchez-Jáuregui's "A Repository of Gifts"; p. 172 (detail), pp. 181-189, p. 184 Fig. 13 (x-radiograph), p. 186 Fig 16 (detail), in Aleksandr Bierig's "Transposition"; pp. 224-235, Figs. 1-4, 6-9, and 13 in Teri Hensick and Kate Smith's "Copley's Working Practice"; p. 259 in Andrew Gelfand's "Chronology"
- Exhibition History
The Paintings of John Singleton Copley, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 12/22/1936 - 02/14/1937
Early Science at Harvard, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 12/18/1969 - 02/01/1970
Paul Revere's Boston 1735-1818, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Boston, 04/18/1975 - 10/12/1975
Process and Paradox: The Historical Pictures of John Singleton Copley, Harvard University Art Museums, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 05/08/2004 - 08/29/2004
The Philosophy Chamber: Art and Science in Harvard’s Teaching Cabinet, 1766–1820, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 05/19/2017 - 12/31/2017
- Related Works
This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of European and American Art at firstname.lastname@example.org