About this artwork

Reynolds’s striking full-length shows, Lord Dunmore, a Highland magnate who served as colonial governor of New York and Virginia. In Virginia, he defended colonists moving into lands obtained by Treaty from the Native American Iroquois confederacy. Other Native Americans, however, attacked and enslaved some settlers before being brutally suppressed by Dunmore’s forces. Both sides considered their actions legitimate self-defence, but the Native American defeat continued a tragic pattern of dispossession by European settlers. After the outbreak of the American Revolution in 1775, Dunmore lost the support of the colonists. To rebuild his army, he offered freedom to enslaved people who would fight against the revolutionaries – the first large-scale emancipation in the history of Colonial America.

Sir Joshua Reynolds

Sir Joshua Reynolds