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Maria, Duchess of Gloucester and Edinburgh

about 1779
36 1/4 x 28 1/4 in. (92.08 x 71.76 cm)

Thomas Gainsborough (English, 1727–1788)

Medium: Oil on canvas
Credit Line: Bequest of Charles Phelps Taft and Anna Sinton Taft
Accession Number: 1931.406

Created by the artist. Possibly acquired by Margaret Burr, wife of the previous; (consigned to Christie’s, London); possibly purchased by Dr. Duval in London, April 10, 1797 (no. 27). Acquired by Princess Mary, Duchess of Gloucester [1776-1857], wife of the 2nd Duke and daughter-in-law of the sitter, Gloucester House, Park Lane, London [1]; by descent to George, 2nd Duke of Cambridge, cousin of the previous, St. James Palace (until 1859) and Gloucester House, Park Lane, London (1859-1904) or Kew Cottage (1890–1904), 1857; (consigned Christie's, London); (purchased by Agnew's, London, June 11, 1904 (no. 85)); (purchased by Scott and Fowles, New York, NY, June 27, 1904); purchased by Charles Phelps Taft [1843-1929] and Anna Sinton Taft [1850-1931], Cincinnati, OH, February 6, 1905; donated to the Cincinnati Institute of Fine Arts, Cincinnati, OH, May 21, 1927 [2]; transferred to the Taft Museum of Art, Cincinnati, OH, September 1, 2006 [3].


[1]. According to Belsey 2019, the painting may have been acquired for William Henry, Duke of Gloucester (cat. no. 402). [2]. The Cincinnati Institute of Fine Arts (CIFA) was formed by Charles Phelps Taft and Anna Sinton Taft on March 22, 1927 as a non-profit corporation to stimulate the development of art and music in the City of Cincinnati and run the Taft Museum of Art, which opened in 1932. The Tafts offered $1 million for a permanent endowment fund, on the condition that the community raise $2.5 million in matching funds, which was achieved by December 3, 1928. [3]. Until August 31, 2006, the Museum was owned by CIFA, administered by CIFA’s Board of Trustees, and governed by the Taft Museum Board of Overseers. On September 1, 2006, the Museum legally separated from CIFA and began operations as its own incorporated 501(c)(3) entity. This separate incorporation led to the transfer to the separate entity after August 31, 2006 of all tangible assets comprising the Taft collection.

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This object is in the following collections: