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Oil Painting - John Freeth and his Circle or Birmingham Men of the Last Century

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Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery

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Basic Information

Accession Number:1909P6
Collection:Topographical Views
Date:1792 - 1792

Maker Information

Artist: Johannes Eckstein - View biography for Johannes Eckstein


Alternatively known as 'Birmingham Men of the Last Century', this painting shows John Freeth, (seated, second from left), with members of the radical Birmingham Jacobin Club, who met at Freeth's tavern, the Leicester Arms, in Bell Street, from 1768 to 1808. The group, members of the rising middle class in the late eighteenth century, were local merchants and manufacturers who were involved with various projects for the improvement of Birmingham, ranging from educational initiatives to canal building. The man wearing the tall hat, on the right, is James Bisset, who published the Magnificent Dictionary of Birmingham, which listed the principal manufacturers and social leaders of the town. He also established one of Birmingham's first museums, which was visited by Nelson in 1802. To the right of Freeth, holding a clay pipe, is the only known portrait of Jeremia Vaux, one of the first surgeons at Birmingham's General Hospital.

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Further Information

Reign:King George IV
Production Period:Georgian
School/Style:Old Master
Medium:Oil on canvas

Associated People


Height:112 cm
Width:166 cm