This portrait, traditionally believed to be one of the Earls of Ely, probably shows Henry, Earl of Ely and 4th Viscount Loftus of Ely, (1709-1783), second son of Nicholas Loftus (d. 1763), 1st Viscount Loftus, M.P. for co. Wexford, created Baron Loftus in 1751, and his first wife, Anne, second daughter of William Ponsonby, Viscount Duncannon. Henry, 4th Viscount Loftus was advanced to the Earldom of Ely in 1771 and installed as a Knight of St. Patrick in 1783. He married firstly, in 1745, Frances, daughter of Henry Munroe of Roe's Hall, Down, and secondly, in 1775, Anne, daughter of Captain Hugh Bonfoy R.N., and died without issue on 8 May 1783. A group portrait of Loftus and his family by Angelica Kauffman is in the National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin.
Loftus Hall, near Fethard-on-Sea, Co. Wexford, was constructed in the late 17th or early 18th century, and stands on a particularly windswept site, near the tip of the Hook head. It was extensively remodelled in 1871 by the 4th Marquess of Ely.