West, Benjamin (17381817)

West, Benjamin, painter, born near Springfield, Pennsylvania, of Quaker parentage; was self-taught, painted portraits at the age of 16, went to Italy in 1760, and produced such work there that he was elected member of several of the Italian academies; visited England on his way back to America in 1763, where he attracted the attention of George III., who patronised him, for whom he painted a goodly number of pictures to adorn Windsor Castle; he remained in England 40 years, painting hundreds of pictures, and was in 1792 elected President of the Royal Academy in succession to Sir Joshua Reynolds; among his paintings were “The Death of General Wolfe,” “Edward III. at Crécy,” and “The Black Prince at Poitiers” (17381817).

Definition taken from The Nuttall Encyclopædia, edited by the Reverend James Wood (1907)

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