In Pursuit of a Vision > Case 2 > Bentley > Mr. Richard Mather


The Details:

John Foster. Mr. Richard Mather. Woodcut, second state, ca. 1670. [catalog record]

Bequest of William Bentley, 1819.

The Story:

Considered the first woodcut and first portrait print produced in America, this likeness of Richard Mather is attributed to John Foster, the earliest engraver and printer in Boston. Mather was admired by Bentley as both a preacher and religious scholar. In 1804, Bentley compared this print to a painted portrait owned by the family (and now at AAS). He noted in his diary that “It agrees as well as possible with my block print.”

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