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An Unidentified Gentleman (probably John Wensley)

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This portrait probably represents wealthy Boston merchant and mariner John Wensley (b. about 1640). The likeness was misidentified in the early twentieth century as Reverend Oliver Peabody (1698–1752), grandfather of the last family owner, Hannah Holyoke (d. 1865). Since Peabody was not born...

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Provenance

1670s, the sitter, John Wensley and and his wife Elizabeth Wensley; by descent to their daughter Mercy Wensley Bridgham; by descent to her daughter Elizabeth Bridgham Holyoke; by descent to her son Reverend Elizur Holyoke (1731-1806); 1806, by inheritance to his daughter Hannah Holyoke; to Mrs. Elvin French, who occupied the Holyoke house in Boxford, Mass., after Hannah died without heirs; about 1912, sold by Mrs. French to Dwight M. Prouty, Boston; descended in the Prouty family to Mrs. Lee Fewel Boiset, Pasadena, Calif.; 1984, sold by the estate of Mrs. Lee Fewel Boiset to the MFA. (Accession Date: November 21, 1984)

Credit Line

Charles H. Bayley Picture and Painting Fund

1670s

Dimensions

93.03 x 83.82 cm (36 5/8 x 33 in.)

Accession Number

1984.578

Medium or Technique

Oil on canvas

Collections

Americas

Classifications

Paintings