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Model - John, 2nd Duke of Montagu
  • John, 2nd Duke of Montagu
    Roubiliac, Louis-François, born 1702 - died 1762
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John, 2nd Duke of Montagu

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1750 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Roubiliac, Louis-François, born 1702 - died 1762 (sculptor)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Terracotta against a modern slate backing

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Dr W. L. Hildburgh, FSA

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Sculpture, Room 24, The Dorothy and Michael Hintze Galleries, case 1

Two models by Roubiliac survive for his monument to the Duke of Montagu in St Edmund's church, Warkton. In this one Roubiliac has left both the architectural elements and surfaces roughly finished, suggesting he was working out the composition of the whole. The individual figures appear to have been modelled separately. It was made in about 1750.

Louis François Roubiliac (1702-1762) was one of the leading sculptors of his generation, and his busts and monuments are among the most important produced in Britain in the first half of the 18th century. He was born in Lyons, and probably trained in Dresden. He was later in Paris, but from 1730 he was based in London, apart from a brief visit to Rome in 1752.

Physical description

Charity with a child at her knee and another on her left arm, stands (right) on a podium and hangs with her right hand a medallion showing the Duke in profile, on an architectural construction that is surmounted by an urn. A cherub (top left) assists. On the left the widowed duchess stands, leaning against the podium and gazing upward at the medallion; a cartouche lies on the podium. The architectural construction is adorned with trophies at each side.

Place of Origin

England (made)


ca. 1750 (made)


Roubiliac, Louis-François, born 1702 - died 1762 (sculptor)

Materials and Techniques

Terracotta against a modern slate backing


Height: 89.5 cm

Object history note

Possibly included in the sale of Roubiliac's effects (12 to 15 May 1762) in the third day's sale, 14 May as lot 67, described under heading 'Designs for Monuments', Basso Relievos, etc.' as 'Five designs for the Duke of Montague's'. On the second day's sale, 13 May, under 'Moulds in Plaister for the following Figures, Busts, etc', lot 57 is described as 'Duke of Mountague's [sic] monument'. In the possession of Louis Meier, 23 Cecil Court, Charing Cross Road, London before 1947, and purchased from him by Dr W.L. Hildburgh F.S.A. for £25. Given by Dr Hildburgh F.S.A. to the Museum in 1947.

Descriptive line

Model, terracotta, for the Monument of John, 2nd Duke of Montagu, by Louis Francois Roubiliac, England, ca. 1750

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

Bilbey, Diane and Trusted Marjorie. British Sculpture 1470 to 2000. A Concise Catalogue of the Collection at the Victoria and Albert Museum. London, 2002. pp. 120-121. cat. no. 165.
Rubilian as an architect? The bill for the Warkton Monuments. Burlington Magazine. January 1980. pp. 40-46.
Baker, M., Bindman, D. Roubiliac and the eighteenth century monument: sculpture as theatre. New Haven, 1995. pp. 300-303. figs. 188-189, 257.
Whinney, M. English Sculpture 1720-1830. London, 1971. pp. 92-93
Baker, M. Roubiliac's models and 18th century English sculptors' working practices. In: Volk, P., ed. Entwerf und Ansfügrung in der europäischen Barockplastik. Munich, 1986. pp. 62-3. figs. 12-14.
Penny, N. Cataloguer of European sculpture in the Ashmolean Museum. III. Oxford, 1992. p. 153.
Trusted, Majorie. ed. The Making of Sculpture: the Materials and Techniques of European Sculpture. London: V&A Publications, 2007. p. 16. pls. 14-15.
Esdaile, K.A., The life and works of Louis François Roubiliac, Oxford and London, 1928, p. 180
Physick, J. Designs for English Sculpture 1680-1860, London, 1969, p. 34, n. 2, fig. 16 on p. 39


Terracotta; Slate

Subjects depicted

Trophies; Cartouche; Medallion


Sculpture; Death; Religion


Sculpture Collection

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