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Wilkie, Sir David

Wilkie, Sir David (1785–1841). Scottish painter renowned for his lively representations of the commonplace in Scottish life. His first important work, now in the National Gallery of Scotland, was Pitlessie Fair (1804), while The Village Politicians (Scone palace) confirmed his reputation when it was submitted to the Royal Academy in 1806. Wilkie had many important patrons, including the duke of Wellington and the prince regent, who commissioned The Penny Wedding in 1818. He was painter-in-ordinary to three monarchs and knighted in 1836. Between 1825 and 1828, Wilkie was in Europe and his later works, showing Italian and Spanish influences, were less popular. In 1840 he visited the Holy Land to paint authentic biblical scenes. On the return journey he died at sea, an event commemerated by Turner in Peace: Burial at Sea (Tate Gallery).

June Cochrane

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Wilkie, Sir David

Sir David Wilkie, 1785–1841, Scottish genre painter. He studied in Edinburgh and at the Royal Academy and won early popularity with his admirable little scenes of everyday life. Anecdotal painting was established in England with Wilkie's success. After traveling on the Continent, he turned to portraiture and historical painting. He became painter-in-ordinary to George IV and was knighted in 1836. Well-known examples of his work, including The Blind Fiddler, The Village Festival, and Blind Man's Bluff, are in the National Gallery and in the Tate Gallery, London.

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