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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

Joseph Banks and Dr Solander, 1778

an unknown artist (engraver)

engraving (sheet: 20.5 cm x 13.0 cm, plate-mark: 17.6 cm x 11.4 cm)

Daniel Solander (1733–1782), naturalist, was a student of Carl Linnaeus, the Swede who devised and systemised the classification of plants and animals used today. Arriving in London from Sweden in 1760, Solander became a fellow of the Royal Society in 1764 and began cataloguing plants at the British Museum. Not long after, he became known to Joseph Banks, and in 1768 he and Banks together applied to the King to obtain berths on James Cook’s Endeavour. Having barely survived the dysentery that killed many of the Endeavour’s crew, Solander returned to England to be fêted along with Banks for his scientific achievements. When Banks withdrew from Cook’s second voyage, Solander followed suit; the pair went to Iceland and the Western Isles before Solander settled into the role of Banks’s librarian and curator in London. Though he produced some significant treatises – including the first scientific account of the kangaroo – he gained a reputation for partying at the expense of cataloguing specimens. He grew corpulent and became a target for satire, and his scientific achievements went largely unrecognised in his lifetime. The first book–length biography of Solander was published in 1998.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Gina and Ted Gregg 2010

Accession number: 2010.156

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Sir Joseph Banks KCB (age 35 in 1778)

Daniel Solander (age 45 in 1778)

Donated by

Loretta Pash (40 portraits)

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.