Tuesday 8 May 2018

Thomas Linaker/ Linacre bust by John Cheere in the Codrington Library at All Souls Oxford

The Codrington Library Plaster Busts by John Cheere

All Souls College, Oxford University.

Part 20.  Thomas Linaker (1460 - 1524).

Fellow of All Souls, 1484.
His tomb was in St Paul's Cathedral - lost in the Great Fire of London.

The memorial for Thomas Linacre (d. 1524), humanist scholar and physician. 

This was recorded very briefly by Stow who did not comment on the location of the monument or its

The inscription was recorded by Dugdale but he did not include anillustration of the monument in his History of St Paul’s.

 The monument was erected in 1557 by John Caius as a retrospective commission. 

That there was noillustration of this monument suggests that it was a sixteenth century tablet which

only contained the epitaph with no image of the deceased.

For a useful potted biography see - 


see also - 

For a better and more detailed biog from the Royal College of Physicians website see 


Portrait of Thomas Linacre (or Lynaker) (c. 1460 – 20 October 1524), 

after an original attributed to Quinten Massys( 1465/6 -1530) dated 1527.

Copied by William Miller (College Beadle of the Royal College of Physicians and amateur painter), 1810.

From an original painting in the Royal Collection at Windsor Castle from the Collection of Charles I. 
It does not appear in van Doort's catalogue of 1639 although it does in a catalogue of James II pictures of 1688 as no. 527, recorded as 'An old mans head.... by Holbein'. By 1818 this had been amended to 'Portrait of the celebrated Linacre founder of the College of Physicians'.

This is the usually accepted image of Linacre. However the identification has been challenged and the original at Windsor is now catalogued as An Elderly Man.

The above image from Royal College of Physicians.


Thomas Linacre (c.1460–1524)

Thomas Linacre
late 19th Century
Oil on wood
36 x 30.5 cms.

Derived from the RCP copy portrait or the original at Windsor Castle

Image courtesy Wellcome Collection.

From Art UK website


Thomas Linacre

Anonymous portrait

Photograph from the Wellcome Library Collection.

from an Unidentified Source.



Portrait of Thomas Linacre; half length, to left, face in profile; in cap and fur-trimmed gown; one hand grasping fur at waist.  Black chalk, graphite, with highlights and red chalk on face and hands

347 x 208 mm
French 17th Century

Bequeathed to the British Museum by Clayton Mordaunt Cracherode, 1799.

Annotated in pen in brown ink below drawing "Thomas Linacre professeur en medecine a son Isle Anglaise, homme certes docte aus deux langues, Grecqs et Latine, ayant copose plusieurs doctes liures, mourat a Lodres Lan de nee seigr."

On verso in pencil "D. Lincoln in letter of Oct. 28, 1949 suggests that this drawing is by the same hand as the original studies for the engravings in Theret's 'Hommes Illustre' 1584, which are in an interleaved copy of the work in the Bibliotheque Nationale".

British Museum.


Thomas Linacre, after Unknown artist, possibly late 18th century - NPG D24306 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Thomas Linacre MD.

anonymous engraving
108 x 95 mm.
Probably late 18th Century

Obviuosly taken from the above French drawing also formerly in the Cracherode Collection

From a drawing in the collection of  Rev. Clayton Maurdant Cracherode (1730 - 99).

National Portrait Gallery

Portrait; bust, to right, face in profile; in cap and fur-trimmed gown; in circle; copied from a seventeenth century copy of a contemporary picture.  1794  Etching and stipple

Thomas Linacre MD.

anonymous engraving
114 x 9 mm.
Probably late 18th Century

Obviuosly taken from the above French drawing also formerly in the Cracherode Collection

From a drawing in the collection of  Rev. Clayton Maurdant Cracherode (1730 - 99).

British Museum.



The photographs above taken by the author.

The fur collar suggests that the John Cheere bust of Thomas Linaker (Linacre) might be derived from the drawing in the Cratcherode Collection in the British Museum. Although the resemblance to the facial features is not close.


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