The portrait of John Bragge was painted during the first decade of Gainsborough's residence at Bath, where he had transferred his practice after failing to secure sufficient employment in his native Suffolk.

The clearly delineated features of Bragge, accentuated by the strong lighting of the head and an accomplished breadth and firmness of modelling, are characteristic of Gainsborough's portraiture at this period in his career. John Bragge was a Dorsetshire countryman who married in Bath in 1762. He rebuilt the family home, Sadborow House, and became a JP and Deputy Lieutenant of the county. This portrait is the first Gainsborough acquired by the museum.


In the sitter's family until 1909.

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