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  • Published: 23 July 2020
  • ISBN: 9781473549395
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 384

The Good Sharps

The Brothers and Sisters Who Remade Their World




A vivid, moving biography of a remarkable eighteenth-century family and their world

A vivid, moving biography of an extraordinary eighteenth-century family and their worldFour brothers, three sisters. From a genteel, religious childhood in the north-east of England, the family would become known in London and across the country as ‘The Good Sharps’. In 1781, the celebrated painter Johan Zoffany made the final strokes on the luminous portrait that attests to their remarkable rise.

Ambitious and inventive, free-thinking and courageous, the Sharps were pioneers in the major movements that defined their age – from industry and medicine to philanthropy and politics. James, a visionary engineer, transformed agricultural practices and the transport network; William became surgeon to George III; and priest John established a model welfare state that even operated the world’s first lifeboat. Most famously of all, Granville, the youngest son, battled tirelessly as Britain’s leading campaigner for the abolition of the slave trade. Elizabeth, Judith and Frances, too, were able to employ distinctive social flair to maintain an unusual degree of independence throughout their lives.

In this vivid, moving biography, Hester Grant steps behind closed doors to reveal the events, passions and dreams that inspired the Sharps to strive for success. The Good Sharps brings to life not just the family who realised that the future could be different, but the new world that they created.

  • Published: 23 July 2020
  • ISBN: 9781473549395
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 384

About the author

Hester Grant

Hester Grant studied modern history at Christ Church, Oxford, where she was awarded the J. L. Field Exhibition and the Keith Feiling History Prize. She subsequently trained and practised as a barrister. Hester gave up her legal career to bring up her three children, and to pursue her great loves of writing and eighteenth-century British history. Her fascination with the Sharps began when she saw their portrait at the 2012 Johan Zoffany exhibition at the Royal Academy.

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