Home > Artists > Nicholas Pocock

Nicholas Pocock (1740-1821)

Captain Nicholas Pocock, OWS (1740-1821)

Nicholas Pocock was the finest and most popular marine painter in Britain during the Napoleonic period, his work being well informed by his own practical experience as a seaman. He also produced a number of distinctive landscapes.

Nicholas Pocock was born in Bristol on 2 May 1740, the son of Nicholas Pocock, a mariner. He grew up in Prince Street, close to the docks and, from 1757, was apprenticed to his father, drawing in his spare time. On the death of his father nine years later, he began to captain Bristol trading vessels (the Lloyd, Betsey and Minerva) for the Quaker merchant, Richard Champion, leading twelve voyages, mainly to America and the West Indies. While at sea, he developed his interest in drawing, regularly illustrating his logbooks with vignettes of the ship, its surroundings and the weather conditions.

Eventually, circumstances must have encouraged Pocock to turn from the merchant navy to professional painting; for though he lost his captaincy in 1778, when Champion became insolvent, he went ahead with a marriage on 10 February 1780.

Showing 1 result


Subject Category

Boats & Ships (1)

Professions & Occupations
Manual Work (1)