Portrait of Governor Philip Gidley Kingc 1800

by Unknown artist

Official portraits were often commissioned when a person was leaving the country or had reached a milestone in their career.

This portrait of Philip Gidley King was painted just before he became the third Governor of New South Wales. King had already accompanied Captain Arthur Phillip with the First Fleet and had been responsible for establishing a settlement on Norfolk Island.

King wears a naval dress uniform with a black crossbelt, most likely used to suspend a ceremonial sword. His uniform would have been a clear visual indication of rank and social standing.

This portrait remained with the King family until presented to the Library in 2010.