John Singleton Copley (American, Boston, Massachusetts 1738–1815 London)
Oil on canvas
50 x 40 in. (127 x 101.6 cm)
Bequest of Richard De Wolfe Brixey, 1943
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 748
Augustus Brine (1769–1840) was the son of Admiral James Brine of the Royal British Navy, by his first wife, Jane Knight. At the age of thirteen, in 1782, Brine enlisted in the Navy as a midshipman aboard the "Belliqueux" under the command of his father. In 1790, he was made lieutenant and, eight years later, he became a commander. During the War of 1812, he commanded the "Medway" and successfully captured the American brig "Syran." He was named rear admiral in 1822. This portrait of young Brine was painted in 1782, seven years after Copley had arrived in England.
Signature: [at left center]: J.S. Copley Pin[xit] / 1782
the subject's son, the Rev. Augustus James Brine (who assumed the name and arms of Knapton in 1860), Boldre House, Lymington, Hampshire, England, died 1879; his son, Augustus L. Knapton, Rope Hill, Lymington; Mrs. Knapton, Stanwell House, Lymington, until 1924; Lord Duveen of Milbank, London; sale, Christie, Manson and Woods, London, 12 Dec. 1924, no. 111; with Frank T. Sabin, London, 1924; with Duveen Brothers, London, 1924; Richard De Wolfe Brixey, by 1930–1943