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Thomas Linley the younger

Thomas Linley the younger (1756-78), the eldest son of Thomas Linley, was a composer, violinist and considered one of the finest violin players in Europe in his day.  He was a contemporary and friend to Mozart whom he met in April 1770 in Italy.

He received his training first in London under William Boyce and then went to Florence to study the violin under Nardini in 1770 under the patronage of the Duke of Ancaster.

This portrait is believed to have been painted when Thomas returned to England in 1771 at the age of 16.  He is depicted in formal attire: a red coat, yellow waistcoat, white cravat with a cocked hat tucked under his left arm and a powdered grey wig.

Tom died in a boating accident on the 5th August 1778 on the estate of his patron at Grimsthorpe Castle, while trying to swim ashore after the boat capsized. 

Currently on display

Thomas Gainsborough
Gallery 3 - South Wall
75.9 x 63.5 cm
Oil on canvas
William Linley Bequest, 1835
Accession number
This picture was adopted by The Friends of Dulwich Picture Gallery, 2012