'The Georgian painter, Thomas Gainsborough, spent some of the most productive years of his career making portraits and landscapes from a base in the city of Bath'. Inspired by the 2012 exhibition at the Holburne Museum curated by Susan Sloman, Steve Poole looks at this shift in Gainsborough's focus and how this changed the presentation of the poor.
'The surviving notebooks of eighteenth century magistrates can be used by historians to investigate the extent to which customary culture was constrained and regulated by law. Wood-gathering may have been essential to the economy of the rural poor, but it remained theft in the eyes of the law. Carl Griffin opens the notebook of William Hunt of West Lavington in Wiltshire and finds that it was a crime that kept the magistrate peculiarly busy'.