He was an Italian singer and composer born and baptised on 8 June 1740. His parents were Domenico and Giancoma. His baptismal sponsor was Signor Giacomo Guadagni. He was one of 14 children. They included brothers Giambattista and P. Luigi, and sisters Maria, Laura, Madalena Tamotti and Ippolita.
The family were known to have lived in Brescia, Quinzano and Venice. In October 1782 Hester - who was involved in a lawsuit with Lady Salusbury and straightened for money - left Streatham for her Brighton home. Johnson followed her. After a violent scene with Queeney, Hester returned to London and resolved to give up Piozzi.
In January 1783, Hester told Piozzi that they must part. Hester retired to Bath and on 8 May 1783 Piozzi left for Italy. Her daughters on seeing that Hester's health was affected consented to the recall of Piozzi.
Johnson was not in love with Hester Thrale, although he had an intelligible feeling of jealousy towards anyone who threatened to distract her allegiance. This of course came to a head shortly before her remarriage when they exchanged parting letters. The resulting estrangement saddened last months of his life.
In 1790 Hester recorded their seventh wedding anniversary party at Streatham Park. In August 1794 Hester became Godmother to Cecilia Siddons 1794-1868 - named after Cecilia Thrale - daughter of Sarah Siddons.
In 1795 they took up residence at Brynbella - a house they built in North Wales on Hester's Bach-y-Graig estate. They also renovated Bach-y-craig. Hester and Gabriel Piozzi seem to have spent most of their winters in Bath. On the occasion of their 19th wedding anniversary, Hester wrote verses of celebration.
Image ©National Portrait Gallery, used under the creative Commons License