A Portrait of Thomas Hope in Turkish Costume

Henry Bone (after William Beechey)

Enamel on copper, 29 x 21 cm
May 1805

Collector, designer and writer Thomas Hope (1770 – 1831), was the scion of a Scottish family of bankers. He is known for introducing neo-classical taste to England. Hope opened for public viewing his home containing his collection of ancient and contemporary art. He published his research on the subject of interior decorating in 1807, in a book titled Household Furniture and Interior Decoration, which was very influential during the Regency period. In the years 1787-1795 Hope toured Mediterranean countries. In this portrait, Hope has been depicted in Turkish costume and a mosque is visible in the background. His costume, pipe, headdress and the dagger in his belt, resembles the kalyoncu engraving in Choiseul-Gouffier’s album Voyage Pittoresque de la Grèce. On the back of the picture it is written that in this depiction, Hope is wearing his “Galcondgi” costume, which he used to wear in the Orient. The oil version of this portrait, of unknown date, by Sir William Beechey, which today is at the National Portrait Gallery, was exhibited in 1799.