Thursday 2 October 2008

Sir Gregory Page-Turner

Anyone wanting to find out from the internet about the Page-Turner family of Bedfordshire will have a problem. If you put “page turner” or “Page-Turner” into Google, in excess of two and a half million hits will be generated, mainly in the senses of something (films as well as books!) of compulsive interest and a person or software that literally turns pages. Of course, adding a first name narrows the hits to nearly manageable proportions.

Earlier this year the National Gallery had an exhibition of paintings by Pompeo Batoni in the Sainsbury Wing which included his portrait of a Bedfordshire gentleman Sir Gregory Page-Turner, 3rd Bt, painted in 1768-69 while he was on his grand tour. It shows a rather preciously posed young man in a red coat against a classic architectural backdrop. The pose is reminiscent of the Apollo Belvedere but actually makes him look overweight. More information about the portrait and the grand tour is at

The picture is owned by Manchester City Galleries and can be seen and downloaded for private use at

How many other Bedfordshire people were painted on their grand tour?

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