William Roscoe

WAG 2527


William Roscoe (1753 - 1831) was Gibson’s first patron. Liverpool-born Roscoe was a lawyer and banker. He was also an art collector, patron, anti-slave-trade MP, botanist and poet. This image was cast from Gibson's clay or terracotta original (which is untraced). The medical practitioner and scholar Thomas Stewart Traill (1781 - 1862), who was one of Roscoe's close friends, once wrote of this potrait: 'There are several representations of him; but none of them appear to me so finely to express the characteristic traits of his head as John Gibson's medallion...[it is] Mr. Roscoe, as I should wish to remember him.' Roscoe himself also approved of the likeness, which recalls imperial portraiture or Roman coinage.