John Linnell studied at the Royal Academy Schools under the patronage of the artist Benjamin West and was a pupil of John Varley. He is best known for his rural landscapes but turned his attention to portraiture after his marriage in 1817. He was a friend and patron of William Blake and father-in-law to Samuel Palmer. Linnell’s eccentricities and radical political and religious views led to a number of rifts with both individual artists, including Palmer and John Constable, and the artistic establishment, perhaps explaining his failure to be elected as a Royal Academician.
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