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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical/Historical Note
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Letters of British art patrons, collectors, and dealers
    Date (inclusive): 1821-1921
    Collection number: 860525D
    Collector: Getty Research Library
    Extent: 66 items
    Repository: Getty Research Institute
    Research Library
    Special Collections and Visual Resources
    1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100
    Los Angeles, CA 90049-1688
    Abstract: An assembled collection of 66 letters, written by 47 persons between 1821 and 1921. Most letters date to the 19th century. The letters present a view of the 19th century world of art patrons, dealers, and collectors.
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    Language: Collection material is in English

    Administrative Information


    Open for use by qualified researchers.

    Publication Rights

    Preferred Citation

    Letters of British art patrons, collectors, and dealers, Research Library, The Getty Research Institute, Accession no. 860525D.

    Acquisition Information

    Assembled from several acquisitions, ca. 1983-1990.

    Processing History

    Processed and cataloged by Onica Busuioceanu. The items in this collection were formerly part of the British artists letters collection (accession number 860525). They were separated when that collection was cataloged.

    Biographical/Historical Note

    Collection assembled by the repository.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    Letters present a comprehensive view of the 19th century world of art patrons, dealers, and collectors in Great Britain. Well-informed patrons spread the word about important collections to be sold, and of “private views” before sales. One of the Irish antiquities dealers sends Lord Londesborough a drawing of a unique bronze plate depicting the Crucifixion, discovered near the ruins of a monastery. Persons who inherited pictures try to sell or donate them. Collectors and art patrons order reproductive prints from the well-known dealer Dominic Colnaghi. Some are actively involved with their dealers: the Baron Berwick asks his to try and sell either "the doubtful Sebastian or Titian," which "should not be in the same room" nor shown together. Booksellers have their place in the growing art market, offering not only rare books, but also colored sets of John Paine tracts. The book collector and connoisseur Felix Slade comments on the "fine specimens" in his loan exhibition of rare books and bindings.


    Letters arranged alphabetically.

    Indexing Terms

    Subjects - Topics

    Art dealers—Great Britain—Correspondence
    Art patrons—Great Britain—Correspondence
    Collectors and collecting—Great Britain