Captain Richard Grindall (1750–1820) and Katherine Grindall (1759–1831) with Their Sons

Image credit: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London

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This 'conversation piece' of a prominent naval officer and his family in a domestic interior is also a formal group portrait in which dress and other details mark the status of the sitters. Richard Grindall stands in Royal Naval captain's uniform (the 1795–1812 undress pattern), accompanied by his wife, Katherine Grindall (née Festing), and four sons. He holds his sword at his right side (though even in a home setting being fully dressed by wearing it to his left might appear less staged). The boys are also in uniform or best gentlemanly dress for their ages and their mother in a fine white muslin gown with a fashionble turban. A painting of a naval action hangs on the wall behind in the centre of the room and a portfolio of maritime prints is open on a desk to the right, both reinforcing the significance of seafaring to Grindall family life.

National Maritime Museum



Captain Richard Grindall (1750–1820) and Katherine Grindall (1759–1831) with Their Sons




oil on canvas


H 101.7 x W 128.7 cm

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