George Romney was born in Lancashire into a large family of eleven children. His father was a cabinet maker by trade and George worked in the family business from the age of ten. In 1755 he was apprenticed to a portrait painter Christopher Steel and acquired knowledge in preparing colours and mixing. He moved and studied in London and became a success exhibiting and being awarded at the Free Society in 1763 for his ‘The Death of General Wolfe’. The artist in more recent times is acknowledged as ranking next after Reynolds and Gainsborough in the late eighteenth century British Portrait School (Watson, 1985).