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John Nost II (d. 1729)

Bust of a Moor  c.1700

Marble | 98.5 cm | RCIN 1396

King's Gallery, Kensington Palace

  • A coloured marble bust of an enslaved man, his head turned and looking up to the left; wearing a turban with plumes, collar about his neck, a shirt with a jewelled collar and wrap tied about; resting on a waisted turned marble socle.

    Black servants were frequently found in noble and royal households from the late seventeenth century and this figure has traditionally been identified as a favourite personal servant of William III (r.1609-1702). The Moor’s feathered turban and jewelled band indicate high, perhaps royal status, but the collar unmistakably marks him as a slave.

    John Nost is best known for carved marble funerary monuments and decorative chimney pieces using exotic marbles.
  • Creator(s)

    John Nost II (d. 1729) (sculptor)

    English (nationality)

  • Medium & Techniques

    Marble

    marble

    Dimensions

    98.5 cm (whole object)

  • Object categorie(s)