Dictionary of pastellists before 1800
REVIEWS OF THE PRINT EDITION
Art Libraries Journal, vol. 32/1, 2007, pp. 45–46:
The biographical literature for pre-19th-century pastellists is sparse, to say the least. Even the most comprehensive collection of monographs, exhibition catalogues, catalogues raisonnés, oeuvre catalogues, collection catalogues, dealers’ sales catalogues, auction catalogues and serials, to name but a few of the formats for research in this highly specialized area, will not provide easy access to such material. To be sure, there are the various fine publications of the Musée du Louvre, Cabinet des Dessins, Inventaire des collections publiques françaises, such as the 1972 Pastels: XVIIème et XVIIIème siècles and the 1985 Musée du Louvre, Cabinet des dessins Musée d’Orsay: pastels du XIXe siècle, but these are by definition limited to a particular place and time. Even so promising a resource as the Bio-bibliographical index by profession, which is part of Saur’s Allgemeines Künstlerlexikon, does not include a separate category for ‘Pastellists’– a notable gap, considering the nearly 70 specialized categories the set covers. Given that such omissions and difficulties of access have long bedeviled the researcher, Neil Jeffares’ Dictionary of pastellists before 1800 is to be greeted with particular celebration.
In turning the pages of this monumental publication, even the non-specialist will quickly sense the depth of scholarship behind its creation and production. It is a beautiful book, mostly on triple-columned pages. Of its more than 5,000 images, 2,000 are in color and many have never been published before; references to all known reproductions of other pastels are also included. The amount of useful material presented is remarkable, and much of it appears both in the Dictionary itself and in the numerous supplementary appendixes and introductory material. This makes the entries themselves all the more useful and renders the Dictionary an incomparable reference and research source. Art historians, collectors, dealers, auction houses, art librarians and advanced researchers in all fields of art research involving this specialized area are the beneficiaries of Jeffares’ achievement.
The book begins with an introduction in French by Pierre Rosenberg, former curator of paintings and recently retired director of the Louvre, who is here listed only as a member of the Académie française. (For a book otherwise entirely in English, a parallel English translation would have been appropriate.) The rest of the book is all Jeffares’. The foreword begins with a quotation from Diderot in Latin. (While the source is footnoted, no English translation is provided; I found this annoying, but those having Latin may not.) The foreword discusses the book’s purpose and includes acknowledgements and some history of the medium. The next section, a well-written survey, presents a detailed history of major artists who used pastel, places them in their various schools, and explains the technical features of pastel. These two substantial introductory sections are followed by a detailed ‘Explanatory note’, itemizing the various parts of a typical entry in this Dictionary. It is followed by a detailed listing of abbreviations, with meanings in French and English.
The Dictionary itself is divided into two sections. The first, ‘Artists A-Z,’ runs to almost 450 pages and covers 1250 named artists, with entries presented alphabetically by last name. The layout of information in and between each entry is appealing, and the combination of text, images and paper color further makes for a pleasing presentation of this wealth of information. Entries include, for example, not only biographical information but also such standard catalogue raisonné information as medium, dimensions, collection, provenance, sitter’s name and details, bibliography, a list of works, and sales and exhibition information. The second section, ‘Anonymous works’, is organized by national schools, with named sitters listed before the unnamed sitters. In all, these two sections list some 20,000 pastels in public collections or known from exhibition and auction catalogues.
The four appendixes are likewise marvels, adding immeasurably to the Dictionary’s richness and utility. The bibliographic listings in Appendix A do not repeat the full details for works cited infrequently in the Dictionary’s entries. General exhibition catalogues are cited by town and state, with the complete bibliographic entries being found in Appendix B. Appendix C includes anonymous general catalogues of individual museums’ holdings.
Appendix B is in two sections. The larger and most germane is B1, ‘Exhibitions before 1800’; B2, ‘Exhibitions after 1800’, though outside the purview of the Dictionary, is terrific to have. Both sections cover the main exhibitions that included pastels, as well as bibliographic details for catalogues of exhibitions that did not include pastels but are referred to elsewhere in the Dictionary. B1 lists the relevant contents of 228 international exhibitions, from ‘Salon du Louvre 1704’ to ‘Salon du Louvre 1800’, with numerous French salons outside Paris as well as exhibitions in London, Berlin, Copenhagen and elsewhere. When available, reviews are listed in the ‘Critiques’ section, often with text extracts. The B2 listings, which go from ‘Royal Academy 1801’ and ‘Salon du Louvre 1801’ to two Paris exhibitions in 2005, are much sparser than those in B1 but add significantly to the Dictionary’s value.
The Appendix C, ‘Index of permanent collections’, is something any really good catalogue raisonné should provide. It lists, alphabetically by country and then by city, where pastels created before 1800 are currently held in museums or other permanent collections around the world. (I did find one error in the latter: the Nelson-Atkins Museum, where I work, is listed as being in Kansas, when it is in fact in Missouri.)
Appendix D includes all of the Dictionary’s named sitters to whom ‘reference must be made for a full discussion of attribution and identification’. Intriguing and enjoyable to peruse by itself, the list is a kind of time capsule, a microcosmic view of the history of portraiture.
French artists, famous or otherwise, clearly dominate, but the Dictionary’s international breadth of coverage renders the book of supreme value to all researchers. The price is fair for a book of this caliber and monumentality. Certain faults might be corrected should there be a second edition, but any undertaking of such magnitude is bound to have some initial publication errors. Perfection and utter comprehensiveness can never be fully realized, but Neil Jeffares has come about as close as humanly possible. His care and diligence shine through this work and do real honor to the artists he memorializes. Any research library should seriously consider acquiring this title; there is no other like it, nor is there likely to be for a very long time.
Senior Librarian, Public Services and Collection Development
Spencer Art Reference Library
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
4525 Oak Street, Kansas City, MO 64111, USA
The Art Newspaper, no. 177, February 2007, p. 40:
Everything you ever wanted to know about pastel painting
A dictionary that is both meticulous in its scholarship and exhaustive in its detail
The title of Neil Jeffares’s massive, 750-page dictionary is misleading, for it not only stands as a major contribution and aid to the study of the art of pastel painting, it also marks a significant advance in understanding portraiture during the later phase of the early-modem period, roughly from 1650 to 1800. In a succinct ten-page introductory essay, Dr Jeffares outlines the basic history of pastel portraiture and its major practitioners, beginning with Robert Nanteuil, whom he describes as “a key transitional figure in the use of the medium for finished portrait drawings”, one who also used the pastel portrait as the basis for portrait engravings. Engravings play a major role in identifying the sitters in the fragile pastels, which hardly ever bear inscriptions or attributes such as heraldic displays which help to identify the subject. Tradition plays an important part here as does a direct relationship to an engraving or an oil portrait, as the evidence of physiognomical likeness can be misleading.
Dr Jeffares’s brief survey touches on the major names of pastel portraiture: Antoine Coypel, Joseph Vivien, Rosalba Carriera, Gustaf Lundberg, Charles Coypel, Jean-Marc Nattier, Maurice Quentin de La Tour, Jean-Baptiste Perroneau, Jean-Étienne Liotard and John Russell. Following this rapid and concise introduction come the nearly 600 pages of the dictionary itself, each entry appearing by the artist in alphabetical order. The artists are identified with years and cities of birth and death, when known, and a summary of their careers. Some of these reach the length of brief essays, that for Carriera, to take one example, absorbs nearly one full page. The biographical entries are followed by lists of monographic exhibitions and a more general bibliography.
Dr Jeffares’s massive achievement comes with the catalogue entries of individual portraits. Each sitter is, where possible, identified, again with birth and death dates and dimensions of the image. Biographical material is kept to a bare minimum, and the interested scholar would be advised to consult this mammoth work with volumes of Cockayne, Burke’s, Debrett’s and the Dictionary of National Biography for the numerous English sitters, Isenburg and Litta for those from the continent, close at hand. The subsequent history of each portrait follows: ownership, appearances in auction houses, sometimes with prices. In all possible cases, illustrations are included adjacent to the relevant entry. For example, all of the pastel portraits given to Giovanna Marmochini Fratellini Cortesi appear in variable black-and-white, sometimes murky but clear enough to establish a personal iconography. The colour reproduction can be equally wayward: Liotard’s celebrated portrait of Francesco Algarotti in the Rijksmuseum, for instance, seems very muted. The size of the reproduction varies from the minute to that of a large-size Liechtenstein postage stamp. In addition to a number of supplementary reference works, a powerful magnifying glass is recommended, especially for the details of inscriptions and signatures which have, with admirable thoroughness, been included.
A section of anonymous but not necessarily unidentifiable portraits follows that of those with attributions. This section is succeeded by a meticulously compiled bibliography, a compendium of exhibitions before 1800 of 57 pages, listing all displayed pictures, followed by a list of exhibitions after 1800, an index of permanent collections and a 32 page index of sitters, five columns each page, cross-referenced to the artist. No effort has been spared to make this potentially unwieldy volume manageable.
It is dangerous to use the word “definitive” when describing a reference book. Neil Jeffares’s Dictionary of Pastellists before 1800 is, however, essential for any scholar interested in pastel painting and ancien régime portraiture of the noble, ecclesiastical, political and cultural elites. It also makes a profoundly important contribution to the history of portraiture as a whole. The study of the careers of such painters of portraits as Ferdinand Voet and even Anthony Van Dyck, especially his images of the nobility of the Republic of Genova, has been plagued by problems of identification of the sitters. The dilemma is particularly acute with female subjects. Princes, clerics, nobles, men of learning are frequently accompanied by Orders, insignia, attributes which offer clues to their identity; women dressed in the same clothes, coiffed in identical fashion can become interchangeable. Yet much recent research has proven that such women had the capacity of wielding considerable power, both within their families and at a level of policy formulation.
They were not the stiff social icons, air-brained “fashion dummies”, that they can seem in various forms of official portraiture. By identifying so clearly and convincingly so many of these members of elites, portrayed in one specific medium, and by providing a convincing scholarly apparatus to surround these portraits, Neil Jeffares has produced a work of profound erudition and supplied rich material not only for historians of art but also for historians of the family and for historians of power.
University of Oxford
Illustration: Gustaf Lundberg, Portrait of Simon Hurtrelle, around 1725
British Journal for Eighteenth Century Studies, vol. 30/1, 2007, pp. 140–41:
Neil Jeffares announces his ambitious goal in the blurb on this mighty volume, a survey of (mainly European) portraiture in pastel before 1800: ‘The Dictionary sets out to establish, for the first time, a convincing body of knowledge to help identify and attribute works by both major artists and the obscure petits-maîtres.’ Indeed, the book is full to bursting with 1250 entries on international, named artists. The entries are ordered alphabetically and each contains a biographical note, a bibliography and a partially illustrated list of paintings. Occasionally, an image is accompanied by a reproduced signature. This catalogue is followed by a partially illustrated list of anonymous works, which are divided into schools according to nationality. Apart from the French, British and Irish, Jeffares has incorporated the German, Danish, Dutch, Flemish, Austrian, Swiss, Polish, Russian, Italian, Spanish and American schools. Among the extensive appendices are an index of sitters, a detailed account of exhibitions between 1700 and 1800 (mainly French and English) and a list of current collections. Neil Jeffares’s short foreword and survey of the history of pastel painting, focusing on the most prominent artists and international connections, together with Pierre Rosenberg’s introduction, precede all this.
With his Dictionary of Pastellists before 1800, Jeffares has succeeded in what he set out to do: he has created an exquisite tool for historians. With its large quantity of material, it significantly surpasses previous publications. A mere flick through the pages invites the reader to make iconographical comparisons to an extent that was not previously possible. Perhaps most importantly, the Dictionary makes material accessible which would otherwise have taken the researcher much time and effort to find. Jeffares’s declared goal is to present the reader with a starting point in his or her search for pastellists and portrait sitters. He has managed to produce a ‘who’s who’ of the period and has found a format which compresses a substantial amount of useful information into a comparatively small space. The Dictionary will be of interest to all who are concerned with the intricate personal connections of the eighteenth century. However, while its compactness is one of its great achievements, the volume has very strict boundaries. The reader may expect a detailed excursion into each painter’s portraits, but will not find further material which might reflect on their scientific or religious interests.
This Dictionary is logical, well illustrated and well equipped, a much-needed addition to the classics available on pastel painting such as R. R. M. Sée’s English Pastels, 1750–1830 (London 1911). It is sure to become a standard work.
Freelance art historian, Zurich
Country Life, 8 June 2006, pp. 142–43:
Pastels have been long neglected in this country, both at the National Gallery of Art and at Tate Britain, as well as by the British Museum – even the Victoria and Albert Museum, which aspires to hold the national collection, fails to exhibit its pastels together. Yet, the dazzling pastel room in the J. P. Getty Museum in Los Angeles shows what scope there still is to acquire masterpieces in the medium.
Neil Jeffares’s Dictionary of Pastellists Before 1800 is an ambitious compilation, illustrating more than 5,000 works and setting out the available information about more than 1,250 artists. Although the outline of the history of the medium is familiar enough, and well summarised in Mr Jeffares’s introduction, much work still remains to be done. For instance, many significant British pastels have yet to be photographed.
Contemporary manuals suggest that the medium was in fairly general use in England by the 1650s, but there are gaps in our knowledge of that early period. The 18th century was the great age of the pastel, both in Europe and in Britain. The heroine of that era was the artist Rosalba Carriera – the contribution of whose assistants has, as yet, to be probed; the stars were Liotard and Maurice-Quentin de la Tour (who with due respect to Mr Jeffares was, I believe, associated with Birochon in the series of portraits executed at Cambrai for Lord Marchmont – the subject of the unidentified portrait illustrated on the right of the central column on page 60).
An artist such as Arthur Pond – who supplied copies after Liotard – is still relatively unfamiliar because he failed to sign his pastels, unlike his younger contemporary Cotes. Although Cotes, Hoare of Bath and Gardner have previously received some attention, Mr Jeffares’s work on other artists, for example, Katherine Read – the only painter to appear in Douglas’ Baronage of Scotland – and John Russell, is particularly welcome. However, the enduring value of this indispensable book is that a host of unfamiliar artists are brought to notice. No one interested in the history of portraiture can afford not to have this comprehensive and admirably indexed production.
Eighteenth-Century Studies, vol. 40/2, Winter 2007, pp. 350–352
M. La Tour ne dégenère pas non plus, Madame; ses Pastels ont toujours un ton ravissant, et cette perfection qui les rend la nature même.
With these words the Chevalier Jean-Florent-Joseph de Neufville de Brunhaubois-Montador enthusiastically reviewed the works of pastellist Maurice-Quentin de la Tour (1704–88) exhibited in the Salon of 1739 (quoted in Jeffares, 642). Chevalier de Brunhaubois-Montador commented on the ravishing and qualities of La Tour’s pastels. These qualities also describe Neil Jeffares’ Dictionary of Pastellists before 1800 even as his explicit objectives are more nearly utilitarian. As Jeffares states in his foreword, he has three goals for this publication. First, the reader should be presented with a comprehensive guide to the producers and sitters of pre-nineteenth-century portraits and, in particular, pastels. Second, the dictionary should supplement the limited number and meager quality of reproductions in previous publications, such as Paul Ratouis de Limay’s Le Pastel en France au XVIIIème Siècle (1946). And third, a coherent narrative of the pastel genre in its zenith, the eighteenth century, must be provided (10–11). Jeffares accomplishes these intentions in the voluminous Dictionary, which is also characterized by a wide chronological span, a vast geographical range, and accessibility to both the scholar and lay reader. Because the eighteenth century marked the heyday of pastel, publications about the genre have tended to focus on that century. Jeffares’ Dictionary, however, includes entries on earlier important pastellists, including Jean Perréal (1455–1530), who introduced Leonardo da Vinci to pastels, and Nicolas Dumonstier (1612–67), the first painter to be admitted as a pastellist to the Parisian Académie Royale de la peinture et de la sculpture (hereafter the Académie) (15). The Dictionary’s survey and individual entries thoroughly explain how the work of seventeenth- and early-eighteenth-century artists such as Sir Peter Lely (1618–80), who introduced pastel to England, and Boucher’s teacher, François Lemoyne (1688–1737), laid the groundwork for the popularity of pastel during the eighteenth century. Several factors contributed to the high status of pastel painting in the eighteenth century—a prominence that was recognized by both the masses and professional organizations, such as the Académie. Pastels were quicker and cheaper to produce than oil portraits or history paintings.
The majority of eighteenth-century pastellists specialized in portraiture, a genre quite popular with and affordable to the burgeoning middle classes, although the aristocracy also embraced the genre. The rapidly executed pastel portrait, which was often bust-length or smaller, was an attractive alternative to the slower and more staid medium of oil painting. Painterly artistic techniques, such as the sfumato favored by Rosalba Carriera (1675–1757), created the effects of spontaneity and verisimilitude in her portraits. The prolific and international output of Carriera and La Tour, who were accepted into the Académie in 1720 and 1746 respectively, also increased the prestige of pastel. By the mid-eighteenth century pastel, also known as crayon painting was so popular that the Académie restricted the number of pastellists who could apply for membership (18).
Although the lengthy entries on Carriera and La Tour in the Dictionary reinforce their prominence as pastellists, Jeffares’ publication also includes a large number of pastellists who worked outside of France, marking it as the first truly international survey of the genre. The entry on British artist John Russell (1745–1806), author of Elements of Painting in Crayons (1773), balances an analysis of artistic innovations with references to contemporary appreciation. Russell, who became painter to George III in 1790, was the first pastellist to place his subjects against an open background or leafy sky, which likely appealed to the British love of portraiture and landscape. He was described as “Britain’s leading pastellist,” and Jeffares asserts that while Russell’s “development of strong, vibrant colours was probably an important factor in opening British taste to pastel—by making it seem as close to oil painting as possible” (445), contemporary viewers may find Russell’s portraits psychologically unconvincing. Similarly, whereas the œuvre of Bohemian pastellist Anton Raphael Mengs (1728–79) was much smaller than that of Russell or Carriera, Jeffares acknowledges that his international positions as court painter to Charles III of Spain and Augustus III of Dresden (also Carriera’s patron) helped to increase the stature of the genre outside France (375).
Both the Dictionary’s individual entries (1250 in total) and its introductory survey help to make this work a user-friendly one. Following a short biography of the artist and bibliography, the pastellist’s works are listed alphabetically, according to the sitter’s last name. Images are plentiful, with an average of seven images per page. With over 5000 reproductions (2000 in color), Jeffares exponentially increases the number of pastel images included in earlier publications. Likewise, the survey provides the reader with a comprehensive description of the international evolution of this medium as well as a listing of the various treatises on its ingredients. The appendices are similarly thorough, containing information on exhibitions of pastels prior to and after 1800 as well as an index of permanent collections and sitters. The exhibition appendices are extremely helpful to scholars of the early modern period, for they contain contemporary Salon criticism, as well as cross-references to the collection Deloynes; McWilliam, Schuster, and Wrigley’s Bibliography of Salon criticism in Paris...1699–1827 (1991); and also non-Parisian exhibitions, such as those at the British Royal Academy. Carriera’s success calls attention to the elevated status of female artists and patrons in the eighteenth-century world of the Salon and various national artistic academies. In some ways, Jeffares’ Dictionary reinforces this development, for a confident Jeune dame en robe bleue rayée (1780) by Adélaïde Labille-Guiard (1749–1803) appears on the text’s cover. Because of pastel’s smaller size and cleanliness (particularly in comparison to oil painting), the genre was especially attractive to female amateurs and professionals, such as Labille-Guiard and Elizabeth Vigée-LeBrun (1755–1842), whose rivalry was a popular theme in late-eighteenth-century art criticism (Sheriff, 1996, 186–9). This competition was often constructed in words that compared their physical beauty first and their artistic talent second. While the Dictionary’s individual entry on Vigée-LeBrun is above reproach, the first words in the introductory survey that describe her are “pretty and accomplished” and thus repeat this antiquated discourse (21). In addition, such a thorough examination of pastel should contain a bilingual version of Pierre Rosenberg’s introduction. Nevertheless, the Dictionary offers a comprehensive and international survey of pastel paintings that is useful for all levels of scholarly inquiry. The reproductions, many of which are in color, are plentiful and of good quality. Its title is really a misnomer, for Jeffares has provided his audience with an encyclopedic treatment of the genre. Like the Chevalier’s assessment of La Tour’s pastels, Jeffares has produced a beautiful and functional publication whose value will not diminish over time.
HEIDI A. STROBEL
University of Evansville
Historic House, Winter 2006, p. 47:
The pastel is a hybrid art form, being neither a painting nor a drawing. Yet, in some respects, it shares certain features in common with both. The medium itself is difficult to use and the results fragile, not just on account of its friable surface but also because of the dangers of exposure to light. Its advantages are ease of application, intense luminosity and variety of texture. Arguably the pastel was at its most popular in Europe during the 18th century when it was closely linked to the dominance of portraiture. Indeed, the vast majority of surviving pastels are portraits. At the time, these were usually glazed and hung in small private rooms in palaces or grand houses. Sometimes today they can be seen displayed in groups in cabinet rooms in museums — Berlin, Dresden, Geneva — where they overwhelm the viewer by their vivid characterisation, fresh colour and close technique. For many people, however, the beauty of pastels, or what Claude-Henri Watelet so aptly described as ‘l’éclat des fleurs’, remains to be savoured. Even so, several pastels have passed through the salerooms in recent years and the increase in prices indicates that they are again becoming desirable items.
This Dictionary, compiled by Neil Jeffares, is a formidable achievement and constitutes a landmark in the subject. Such a publication was much needed and fortunately, in so far as the sustained and dedicated scholarship demonstrated by the author is matched by the highest standards of book production brought to the project by Unicorn Press, the result is a triumph in more ways than one. Just to list what is packed between the covers indicates the scale of the undertaking: a survey outlining the development of pastels in Europe and America together with a summary of technical considerations entries on 1250 individual artists lavishly illustrated with over 5000 reproductions (2000 in colour) from a huge number of sources, a list of those exhibitions that included pastels between the dates of 1704 and 2005 with transcriptions of the relevant entries from those catalogues dating from before 1800, and yet other indexes of collections and sitters plus a bibliography. Furthermore, biographies of artists are detailed and fulsome and include pithy and illuminating observations on stylistic evolution. The great names — Maurice-Quentin de la Tour, Jean-Baptiste Perroneau, Rosalba Carriera, Jean-Etienne Liotard, Elizabeth Vigée-Lebrun, John Russell, Hugh Douglas Hamilton, Francis Cotes — are analysed alongside other less well-known but significant artists such as Pierre Bernard, Joseph Boze, Joseph Ducreux, AdelaIde Labille-Guiard, Simon-Bernard Lenoir, Gustaf Lundberg, William Hoare of Bath, Katherine Read, Jean Valade and Louis Vigée. Thanks to this Dictionary the work of these and other fine pastellists will become better known and their work more readily identifiable. Neil Jeffares is refreshingly trenchant in some of his judgments and he is careful to retain a sense of proportion when regarding the place of pastels in the overall hierarchy of 18th century art. His personal preference is clearly for French artists and on occasions he can adopt a fairly harsh tone towards British pastellists.
The use of pastel continued into the 19th century with the Barbizon school, the Impressionists and the Post Impressionists, in addition to the activities of the Société des Pastellistes Français founded in 1885. There is easily enough material for another, perhaps less capacious, volume, but we shall have to wait to see if Neil Jeffares has either the energy or the inclination to continue his quest. But, in the meantime, he is to be heartily congratulated on completing the present task.
Times Literary Supplement, 23 June 2006, p. 33:
The art of catching a vivid likeness through rubbing coloured dust into paper reached a height of popularity in the mid-eighteenth century; indeed, carefree aristocratic faces smiling out from pastel portraits constitute one enduring image of the century itself. Sharing its tinted powders with the make-up worn by its subjects, pastel represented an “art de vivre”; part of the pastel artist’s stock-in-trade was sparkling conversation to animate the sitter. The medium excelled at capturing the lustre of eyes and lips and the bloom of cheeks. It has a luminosity of its own, especially when viewed in intimate candle-lit interiors, and an air of spontaneity which cannot be faked (the medium does not allow for many second thoughts).
Pastels have fallen out of fashion with scholars and collectors in recent decades. Robert Neil Jeffares’s monumental, beautifully produced and illustrated Dictionary of Pastellists before 1800 will reopen eyes, not least to the range of pastel’s subject matter and moods – from Chardin’s incomparable still lives and portraits to the dourness of John Russell’s Captain William Bligh. Alongside Quentin de La Tour and Thomas Lawrence, Rosalba Carriera and Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun, the Dictionary’s 1,250 biographical entries include Mlle Dacke from Berlin, an obscure amateur copyist of Old Masters in the 1790s, and Stanislas Leszczynski, King of Poland and Louis XV’s father-in-law. The exquisite Jean-Baptiste Perronneau rubs shoulders with Jean Perreal, Jehan de Paris (d 1530), who probably instructed Leonardo da Vinci in drawing in coloured chalk – for the Dictionary also embraces sixteenth- and seventeenth-century practitioners. The index of some 7,000 sitters turns up Beau Nash, Alexander Pope, Izaak Walton and the aeronaut John Jeffries, who crossed the English Channel by balloon in the l780s. With a succinct introduction, historical survey, essay on technique, and lists of exhibitions and collections, the Dictionary is an indispensable research tool, which will revolutionize scholarship in the field.