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Grand Tour

The Grand Tour is the name given to the travels around the principal towns and monuments of Europe made by young men of the British upper class in the 18th century. It was considered an important part of the education of a young man to see the great artistic achievements and classical remains of Europe, particularly those of Italy, as well as to improve language skills and to observe the different manners and governments of Europe.

Many had their portraits painted while abroad by artists such as Batoni and returned with a taste and appreciation for the culture of Southern Europe; this to some extent explains the character of the collections of paintings and antiquarian remains found in a number of British country houses, and in certain instances the design and landscaping of them.