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IIIF Actions
Print made by Remi Parr, active 1723–1750
after Peter Monamy, 1681–1749
Published by Bowles & Carver, 1763–1830
Published by Robert Wilkinson, 1758–1825

The taking of Porto Bello by Vice Admiral Vernon on the 22nd of Novr. 1739 with Six Men of War only

Materials & Techniques:
Line engraving with hand coloring in watercolor on medium, slightly textured, cream wove paper
Sheet: 12 5/16 × 18 1/8 inches (31.3 × 46 cm), Plate: 11 9/16 × 14 3/8 inches (29.4 × 36.5 cm), Image: 10 5/16 × 14 1/16 inches (26.2 × 35.7 cm)

Watermark: "J Ruse | 1802"

Lettered below image, lower left:"pinxt. Publisd according to act of Parliament." ; center: "The taking of Porto Bello by Vice Admiral Vernon on the 22d. of Novr. 1739 with Six Men of War only. | London Printed for Bowles & Carver No. 69 St. Pauls Church Yard & Robert Wilkinson No. 58 Cornhill."; lower right: "R. Parr sculp. from the Original Painting in Vaux-hall Garden."

Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
Prints and Drawings
Subject Terms:
battle | castle | hills | marines (visual works) | military art | navy | rowboats | sea | ships | smoke | War of the Austrian Succession (1740-48)
Associated Places:
Colón, Provincia de | Panama | Portobello
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IIIF Manifest:

The capture of Puerto Bello, the Spanish trading post on the coast of present-day Panama, was the most celebrated British naval victory of the first half of the eighteenth century. Admiral Edward Vernon, a fierce critic of Prime Minister Robert Walpole and what he saw as insufficiently assertive policies with regard to national trade and the maintenance of the navy, had boasted to Parliament in 1729 that he could take Porto Bello, as it was then known, with “six ships only.” Mounting hostilities between Britain and Spain in the 1730s broke out into war, and, in 1739, Vernon made good on his promise. News of the capture reached London in March 1740, and Monamy’s painting appears to have been installed at Vauxhall in a matter of weeks: Frederick, Prince of Wales (son of George II), and his wife, Augusta, viewed it there on May 19. Monamy’s composition provides a legible depiction of the action as it was described in published reports. The painting was one of a range of cultural productions that celebrated Vernon as a national hero.

Gallery label for Spreading Canvas - Eighteenth-Century British Marine Painting (Yale Center for British Art, 2016-09-09 - 2016-12-04)

Spreading Canvas - Eighteenth - Century British Marine Painting (Yale Center for British Art, 2016-09-09 - 2016-12-04) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition] [Exhibition Description]

Jonathan Conlin, The pleasure garden , from Vauxhall to Coney Island, , University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, 2013, pp. 84-86, fig. 3.2, SB451.36.G7 P54 2013 (YCBA) Also available online (ORBIS) [Project Muse] [YCBA]

Eleanor Hughes, Spreading Canvas : Eighteenth-Century British Marine Painting, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, 2016, p. 3, 161, 163, cat. 24, fig. 4, ND 1373.G74 S67 2016 (YCBA) [YCBA]

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