John Jones

John Jones, John Lawlor, white marble bust, 1882. Museum no. A.79

John Jones, John Lawlor, white marble bust, 1882. Museum no. A.79&A-1970

John Jones was born in Middlesex in 1798/9. Following an apprenticeship he set up business in London as a tailor and army clothier. He retired in 1850, when he began to amass his collection of 18th-century continental largely French decorative arts, which he displayed at his home, No. 95 Piccadilly. Jones died on 7 January 1882, leaving his collection, valued at £200,000, to the South Kensington Museum on the condition that it was kept as a discrete collection. In total, the bequest comprised 1034 objects (excluding the books), including 105 paintings, 137 portrait miniatures, 147 pieces of porcelain, 52 bronzes and ormolu objects, 135 pieces of furniture, 109 sculptures in marble and alabaster, and 313 prints. His collection of books, which numbered c. 780 volumes, included the first three Shakespeare folios.


Information in the V&A Archive

MA/1/J721: Nominal file – John Jones (bequest)

ED 84/38: Precis of the Board minutes of the Science and Art Department. Vol. V, 1881 – 1883

MA/30/118-121: Central Inventory registers, museum object numbers 480-1882 to 1434-1882

MA/49/2/57: Press cuttings

MA/32/36-38: Photographs

Selected printed works

List of the bequests and donations to the South Kensington Museum, now called The Victoria and Albert Museum: completed, to 31st December 1900. London: Printed by HMSO, 1901. NAL pressmark: VA.1901.0001

Brief guide to the Jones Collection. London: HMSO, 1922. NAL pressmark: 185.357

Catalogue of the Jones Collection. Part 2: ceramics, ormolou, goldsmiths’ work, enamels, sculpture, tapestry, books and prints. London: HMSO, 1924. NAL pressmark: VA.1924.0004

Handbook of the Jones Collection in the South Kensington Museum: with portrait and woodcuts. London: Published for the Committee of Council on Education by Chapman and Hall, 1883. NAL pressmark: VA.1883.0010

Brackett, Oliver. Catalogue of the Jones Collection. Part 1: furniture. London: HMSO, 1922. NAL pressmark: 47.C.65

‘The Jones bequest to the South Kensington Museum.’ The Times. 12 December 1882

de Champeaux, A., ‘Le legs Jones au South Kensington Museum.’ In Gazette des Beaux-Arts 2nd ser., 27 (1883): 425-44

Long, Basil S., Catalogue of the Jones Collection. Part 3: paintings and miniatures. London: HMSO, 1923. NAL: pressmark: 79.B

Kauffmann, C. M., ‘Jones, John (1798/9–1882).’ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography . Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. NAL pressmark: 920.041 DIC

Sutton, D., and others, ‘The Jones collection in the V&A Museum.’ In Apollo 95 (1972): 2-58. NAL pressmark: PP.1.A

To locate material in the National Art Library, please search the Library Catalogue.

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