Sir Horace Mann, 1st Baronet

Venus with a Satyr and Cupids by Annibale Carracci Raphael, Madonna della Sedia (Madonna of the Chair), c.1514 Guido Reni, Charity, 1607 Raphael, St John the Baptist Reni, Madonna Madonna della seggiola Correggio, Madonna and Child Justus Sustermans, Galileo Raphael, Madonna of the Goldfinch Franciabigio - Madonna of the Well Guido Reni, Cleopatra, 1635–40 Holy Family, then attributed to Perugino Rubens, Justus Lipsius with his Pupils, c.1615 Portrait of Leo X with two Cardinals by Raphael Tribute Money? by Carravagio? Rubens, Justus Lipsius with his Pupils, c.1615 Raphael, Pope Leo X with Cardinals Giulio de’ Medici and Luigi de’ Rossi, 1518 Niccolini-Cowper Madonna by Raphael Large central painting Holbein, Sir Richard Southwell, 1536 Cristofano Allori, Miracle of St Julian Holy Family, attributed to Niccolò Soggi ummm Raphael, Niccolini-Cowper Madonna, 1508, then in Lord Cowper’s possession, having bought it from Zoffany, now National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC Titian, Venus of Urbino, 1538 Cupid and Psyche, Roman copy of a Greek original of the 1st or 2nd century BC The ‘Arrotino’ (Knife-Grinder), a Pergamene original of 2nd or 3rd century BC Dancing Faun, marble replica of a bronze of the circle of Praxiteles, 4th century BC The Infant Hercules Strangling the Serpents The Wrestlers, marble copy of a bronze Permamene original, 2nd or 3rd century BC Chimera - Etruscan art 8 Oil lamps Egyptian ptahmose, 18th dynasty Greek bronze torso Bust of Julius Caeser Roman silver shield Head of Antinous South Italian crater Etruscan jug Octagonal table with pietra dura top made for the Tribuna, designed by Jacopo Ligozzi and Bernardino Poccetti. Charles Loraine Smith (1751–1835) Richard Edgcumbe, later 2nd Earl of Mount Edgcumbe (1764–1839) George, 3rd Earl Cowper (1738–89) Sir John Dick (1720–1804), British Consul at Leghorn Other Windsor, 6th Earl of Plymouth (1751–99) Johann Zoffany George Legge, Lord Lewisham, later 3rd Earl of Dartmouth (1755–1810) unknown young man Mr Gordon Hon. Felton Hervey (1712–73) Thomas Patch (1725-82), Painter Sir John Taylor Bt., (d. 1786) Sir Horace Mann (1706–86), British Consul in Florence George Finch, 9th Earl of Winchilsea prob. Roger Wilbraham (1743-1829) Mr Watts Mr Doughty, travelling with Charles Loraine Smith Probably Thomas Wilbraham (b. 1751), brother of Roger The Medici Venus, Roman copy of a Greek original of the 2nd century BC James Bruce (1730–94), African explorer
Tribuna of the Uffizi by Johann Zoffany. Place cursor over artworks or persons to identify them.

Sir Horace (Horatio) Mann, 1st Baronet KB (c.25 August 1706 - 6 November 1786), diplomat, was a long-standing British resident in Florence.


He was the second son of Robert Mann (1678–1751), a successful London merchant, and his wife. He was brought up at Chelsea, and educated at Eton College and later, briefly, at Clare College, Cambridge.[1]

Suffering from poor health, he travelled on the continent in the 1730s. In February 1737, he was appointed as secretary to Charles Fane, the British Minister at Florence.[2] He then served as British diplomatic representative there to the Grand Dukes of Tuscany for the rest of his life. In the course of his long diplomatic career, he was Chargé d'affaires in 1738-1740; Minister between 1740 and 1765; Envoy Extraordinary from 1767; and finally Envoy Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary from 1782 until his death.[3]

As Great Britain had no diplomatic representation at Rome, Mann's duties included reporting on the activities of the exiled Stuarts, the Old Pretender and the Young Pretender.[2]

He kept an open house for British visitors at Florence, inviting them for conversazione when there was no performance at the theatre. His generosity and kindness was universally acknowledged,[4] although his close friendship with the painter Thomas Patch (expelled from Rome after a homosexual incident) reflected on his reputation.[5] He met Horace Walpole (to whom he was distantly related[6]) in 1739, and conducted a now-renowned correspondence with him over forty years, though they last met in 1741. The correspondence was published by Lord Dover in 1833.[2]

In recognition of his service he was created a baronet on 3 March 1755.[7] and made a Knight of the Bath on 26 October 1768.[2] (when his nephew Horace stood proxy).[5] In 1775, on the death of his elder brother, Edward Louisa Mann, he inherited the Linton Park estate which his father had bought at Linton, Kent.[2]

He died unmarried in Florence on 6 November 1786. His nephew Horace inherited his baronetcy by special remainder and also acted as Chargé d'affaires until the arrival of his replacement.[3]


  1. "Mann, Horace (MN720H)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 Seccombe 1893.
  3. 1 2 D. B. Horn, British Diplomatic Representatives 1689-1789 (Camden 3rd Ser. 46, 1932)
  4. "he does honour to our nation. He lives elegantly and generously. He never fails in any point of civility and kindness to his countrymen. The politeness of his manners, and the prudence of his conduct, are shining examples both to the Britons and Italians. He is the only person I have ever known, whom all Englishmen agree in praising. He has the art of conquering our prejudices, and taming our fierceness." John Boyle, 5th Earl of Cork and Orrery, in Letters from Italy in the Years 1754 and 1755, 1773, 107–8
  5. 1 2 Hugh Belsey, ‘Mann, Sir Horatio, first baronet (bap. 1706, d. 1786)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004
  6. Mann's great-great-grandmother was the sister of an ancestress of Walpole: Hugh Belsey, ‘Mann, Sir Horatio, first baronet (bap. 1706, d. 1786)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004
  7. Leigh Rayment's list of baronets

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Seccombe, Thomas (1893). "Mann, Horace". In Lee, Sidney. Dictionary of National Biography. 36. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 


Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Charles Fane
British Envoy to Tuscany
Succeeded by
Sir Horace Mann
as Chargé d'affaires
Baronetage of England
New creation Baronet (of Linton, Kent)
Succeeded by
Horace Mann
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