Sir Joshua Reynolds could never have anticipated an edition of his letters; he once told Boswell that "If I felt the same reluctance in taking a Pencil in my hand as I do a pen I should be as bad a Painter as I am a correspondent." Yet although his surviving letters are those of a busy man, and many are perfunctory responses or requests, they remain of considerable interest to the reader. This is the first edition of letters by Reynolds to be published since 1929. Since that date the number of known letters has almost doubled. The new volume contains a total of 308 letters by the artist to friends, family, and patrons, all of which are accompanied by detailed notes to identify the recipient and illuminate the text.