This painting was one of several commissioned by Sir Jacob Bouverie from the painter George Lambert. It was displayed at Longford Castle, in Wiltshire, Bouverie's country seat, where it hung in the Hall, over the chimney piece; the first thing visitors saw as they entered the castle.
George Lambert, theatre scene and landscape painter, divided his career equally between the two professions. For most of his life he lived in Covent Garden. His early style of the 1720s is similar to that of John Wootton. However, his later classical landscapes earned him the accolade ‘the English Poussin’. Lambert painted the landscape backgrounds for William Hogarth’s paintings ‘The Pool of Bethesda’ and ‘The Good Samaritan’, made for St. Bartholomew’s Hospital (1736-37). In 1761 he was elected chairman of the newly founded Society of Artists of Great Britain. The Society received the Royal Seal on 26th January 1765 and just five days later Lambert died at his home in Covent Garden, leaving his possessions to his servant, Ann Terry.
Commissioned by patron of science and philanthropist Jacob Bouverie, 1st Viscount Folkestone (c.1694-1761; formerly Jacob Des Bouverie) in 1742-43, at a cost of £25, 5 shillings; sold through Christie's, London, 'Pictures c.1550-c.1850' sale, on 13 July 1962 (Lot 74), as 'View of Longford Hall with gardeners in foreground', bought in; collection of R. Lindsay; with Agnew's Gallery, London, by March 1963; from whom purchased by the Ministry of Works in April 1963
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