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  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1817 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Bone, Henry, born 1755 - died 1834 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Enamel on copper, silver-gilt, glass

  • Credit Line:

    The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Collection on loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Francis Rawdon-Hastings (1754-1826), was Governor-General of Bengal from 1813 to 1822, overseeing the Gurkha War and also the purchase of Singapore in 1819.

In the 17th century, new techniques of painting enamels allowed delicate portraits resembling tiny oil paintings to be created. These enamel miniatures were first fashionable in continental Europe, but were particularly in vogue in Britain from the 1720s to 1760s. Henry Bone (1755-1834) was a successful enameller in England. As a boy, he worked in William Cookworthy's porcelain factory in Plymouth. It was there that he was introduced to the art of enamel painting. He exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1781 and became a Royal Academician in 1811. Many of his enamel portraits are copies of older full-scale paintings, including a series depicting prominent men and women from the Elizabethan period. His sons, Henry Pierce Bone (1779-1855) and William Bone Senior (active 1810-43), followed in his footsteps and became enamellers. Like his father, Henry Pierce Bone made enamel copies of paintings of historical figures.

Sir Arthur Gilbert and his wife Rosalinde formed one of the world's great decorative art collections, including silver, mosaics, enamelled portrait miniatures and gold boxes. Arthur Gilbert donated his extraordinary collection to Britain in 1996.

Physical description

Elongated octagonal portrait miniature depicting Francis Rawdon-Hastings, 2nd Earl of Moira. He is shown bust length, turning slightly to the left in a white wig and a red uniform with blue trim, gold braid and epaulettes in front of green columns and an Indian fortress. The portait miniature is in a silver-gilt and glass frame.

Place of Origin

England (made)


ca. 1817 (made)


Bone, Henry, born 1755 - died 1834 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Enamel on copper, silver-gilt, glass


Height: 10.31 cm, Width: 7.74 cm, Depth: 1.03 cm

Descriptive line

Enamel miniature on copper of Francis Rawdon-Hastings, 2nd Earl of Moira, in a silver-gilt frame, England, ca.1817, by Henry Bone R.A.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Coffin, Sarah and Bodo Hofstetter. Portrait Miniatures in Enamel. London: Philip Wilson Publishers Ltd. in association with the Gilbert Collection, 2000. 168 p., ill. Cat. no. 9, p. 56. ISBN 0856675334.

Labels and date

Francis Rawdon-Hastings, 2nd Earl of Moira
About 1817

Francis Rawdon-Hastings (1754–1826) was governor general of Bengal from 1813 to 1822. A portrait of Rawdon-Hastings earlier in his career painted by Henry Spicer is displayed in the first drawer of the
adjacent showcase.

England; Henry Bone (1755–1834)
Enamel on copper in gilded silver frame
Museum no. Loan:Gilbert.262-2008 []


Enamel; Copper; Silver; Glass


Painting (image-making); Gilding; Framing

Subjects depicted



Enamels; Metalwork; Portraits


Metalwork Collection

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