after treatment Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
Joseph Wilton, British (London, England 1722 - 1803 London, England)
William Pitt (1708 - 1778)
William Pitt, Earl of Chatham (1708-1778)
Work Type
bust, sculpture
Creation Place: Europe, United Kingdom
Persistent Link
Physical Descriptions
Composite ceramic
68 x 42 x 19 cm (26 3/4 x 16 9/16 x 7 1/2 in.)
socle: 10.8 × 20.3 × 20.3 cm (4 1/4 × 8 × 8 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • inscription: back, incised, English: Wm. Pitt / Earl of Chatham
Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Philadelphia, gift; to Harvard University, 1769
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard University Portrait Collection, Gift of Dr. Benjamin Franklin, 1769
Accession Year
Object Number
European and American Art
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Publication History

Louise Todd Ambler, Early Science at Harvard: Innovators and Their Instruments, 1765 - 1865, exh. cat., Fogg Art Museum (Cambridge, MA, December 1969-January 1970), p. 13

H. Wade White, "Nineteenth Century American Sculpture at Harvard, a Glance at the Collection", Harvard Library Bulletin (Cambridge, MA, October 1970), vol. XVIII, no. 4, p. 359

Louise Todd Ambler, Benjamin Franklin: A Perspective, exh. cat., Fogg Art Museum (Cambridge, MA, 1975), no. 33, ill. p. 68

Sandra Grindlay, "Harvard's Portraits: An American Treasure", Harvard University Art Museums Review (Fall 1992), vol. II, no. 1, pp. 6-7, p. 6

John T. Bethell, Richard M. Hunt, and Robert Shenton, Harvard A to Z, Harvard University Press (Cambridge, MA, 2004), p. 276

"A Layered History", Index Magazine, Harvard Art Museums (September 19, 2017), repr.,, accessed October 19, 2017

Jonathan Shaw and Jennifer Carling, "The Lost Museum: Teachings of the Philosophy Chamber, Recreated", Harvard Magazine (Cambridge, MA, 2017), pp. 42-49, p. 43

Ethan Lasser, ed., The Philosophy Chamber: Art and Science in Harvard’s Teaching Cabinet, 1766–1820, exh. cat., Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2017), p. 79, plate 15; p. 47 in María Dolores Sánchez-Jáuregui's "A Repository of Gifts"; pp. 236-248. Figs. 1-4 and 7 (details), 5, 8-12 (technical exam images) in Anthony Sigel, Claire Grech, and Katherine Eremine's "Harvard's First Sculpture"

Brian D. Gallagher, Classic Black: The Basalt Sculpture of Wedgwood and His Contemporaries, exh. cat., The Mint Museum (Charlotte, 2020), pp. 45-46, repr. p. 46 as fig. 24

Exhibition History

Benjamin Franklin: A Perspective, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 04/17/1975 - 09/22/1975

The Philosophy Chamber: Art and Science in Harvard’s Teaching Cabinet, 1766–1820, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 05/19/2017 - 12/31/2017; The Hunterian Art Gallery, Glasgow, 04/17/2018 - 07/15/2018

Related Articles

This record was created from historic documentation and may not have been reviewed by a curator; it may be inaccurate or incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of European and American Art at