Portrait of a Young Man Writing c.1760; ...

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Oil on canvas within a gilded oval and a fine 19th century frame.
The good looking young man is dressed in the fashionable clothes of the aristocracy of the period and, holding his pen, turns away from his writing to look at the viewer.
His rather thoughtful expression and level gaze enhance the charm of this beautiful portrait.

FRANCOIS-HUBERT DROUAIS (1727-1775) trained under Boucher and was strongly influenced by his style; he became a rival to Nattier as a fashionable portraitist. His portraits have a gracious and slightly artificial charm redolent of the French Court.
Painting mainly the aristocracy, he was particularly successful with children, but his best known portrait is probably that of Madame de Pompadour, mistress to Louis XV.

SIZE: 38 x 33.25 x 3.5 inches including the frame.
PROVENANCE: Worcestershire Private Collection.

Portrait thought to be of Benjamin Clapham ...

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Oil on canvas.
This is a superb quality portrait, typical of Vanderbank's finest work. At this period many portraits were produced, a large number of them depicted the sitters in a sterotypical, stylised manner. That is not the case here; with a remarkably contemporary feel to it, this is an extremely sensitive and talented painting.
The sitter regards us, as he did the artist, with a frank and level gaze.
The portrait has, at some time in the past, been reduced in size. However, this has not had an adverse effect on the image; on the contrary, as the sitter now fills his space within the frame it is as if he has moved closer to the viewer, creating a strong feeling of intimacy.

Braithwaite Hall can be seen in Image 6

JOHN VANDERBANK (1694-1739) was born in London into an artistic family at the close of the seventeenth century. The son of John Vanderbank Senior, the well known royal tapestry weaver, Vanderbank studied painting first with his father and the portrait painter Jonathan Richardson.
He was one of Godfrey Kneller's earliest pupils at the Academy of Painting from 1711, and in 1720, when Kneller’s academy began to decline, started his own Academy of painting in St. Martin's Lane.

Vanderbank himself was a very able draughtsman, who, in his prime, found his works favoured over those of Hogarth. His painting style followed on from the vigour and grand style of Kneller. His work, however, is characterised by a more vital and nervous drawing than many of his contemporaries, and by a bold pigmentation, particularly in the flesh, where pink tones are painted thinly over the cooler greys of the ground layer to suggest glowing skin – the technique of 'colori cangianti', derived via Rubens from the artists of the seicento. Equally distinctive in Vanderbank’s work is the placing of pure red pigments for the highlights.

It was noted by George Vertue that "only intemperance prevented Vanderbank from being the greatest portraitist of his generation." He died of tuberculosis in Holies Street, Cavendish Square, London, on 23 Dec. 1739, aged about 45, and was buried in Marylebone church.

SIZE: 23 x 21 inches including frame.
PROVENANCE: The Collection of Sir William Whitfield CBE, St Helen Hall, County Durham. (Image 7)
VERSO: Inscriptions identifying the sitter.

SOLD....Portrait of a Physician c. 1780; Follower ...

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Oil on canvas in a simple frame.

An unusual portrait of a physician/surgeon c.1770, his right arm resting on a medical book and an anatomy diagram to his right.
The doctor wears a good quality broadcloth suit expensively trimmed with silver braid; he wears his own hair rather than a wig and it is unpowdered. He looks out with a serious but benign expression...the very image of a competent professional man.

SIR NATHANIEL DANCE R.A. (1735 - 1811) was a neo-classical history painter and portraitist. Son of an architect, he was trained as an artist by Francis Hayman from c.1749. He went to Rome in 1754 until 1765, working with Pompeo Batoni.
He met, and fell in love with, Angelica Kauffmann but the relationship ended when they returned to London in 1766.
Dance had a very good portrait business in London, painting the King and Queen.
His male portraits were renowned for being solid and full of character.
He was elected a founder member of the Royal Academy.
He became a baronet and inherited a fortune in the 1770s and gave up portrait painting in 1782, becoming an M.P. in 1790.

SIZE: 39 x 31.5 inches inc. frame

PROVENANCE: Private Collection.

SOLD....Portrait of Catherine Sedley, Countess of Dorchester ...

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Oil on canvas in Lely pattern gilt frame.

An extremely high quality portrait thought to be of Catherine Sedley; the sitter bears a very strong resemblance to a portrait of 1685 by Kneller at Kedleston Hall. (See Plate 96 'Painted Ladies. Women at the Court of Charles ll'. Published by the National Portrait Gallery).
As was the fashion the sitter is shown wearing her most informal garments, known as 'undress' yet she wears a diamond brooch and holds what seems to be a diamond necklace. (Until the 19th c. all diamonds were flat or table cut and thus appear as black gems in portraiture). One can only presume there was some significance in their depiction...perhaps relating to her engagement or marriage which occurred around this time.

CATHERINE SEDLEY, Countess of Dorchester, Countess of Portmore (c. 1657 – 26 October 1717), daughter of Sir Charles Sedley, 5th Baronet, was the mistress of King James II both before and after he came to the throne.

She was created Countess of Dorchester for life in 1686, an elevation which aroused much indignation and compelled Catherine to reside for a time in Ireland. In 1696 she married Sir David Colyear, Bt., who was created Earl of Portmore in 1703, and she was thus the mother of Charles Colyear, 2nd Earl of Portmore. She died at Bath on 26 October 1717, when her life peerage became extinct.

By James II, Lady Dorchester had a daughter Lady Catherine Darnley (d. 1743), who married James Annesley, 3rd Earl of Anglesey, and after his death married John Sheffield, 1st Duke of Buckingham and Normanby. Through Catherine, her daughter by her first husband, she was the ancestress of the Barons Mulgrave and of the Mitford sisters.

JOHN CLOSTERMAN (1660-1711), born in Osnabruck, settled in London in !681. He worked with John Riley until the latter's death in 1691.
By the 1690s Closterman was rediscovering earlier influences, especially the extravagant, textural, French manner he learned in Paris under François de Troy. He was adept at fashionable baroque poses, with rather showily painted draperies.
Closterman’s sense of theatre and his mastery of colour explains his appeal to a broad clientele, from nobles like the Dukes of Somerset and Marlborough to Sir Christopher Wren and Henry Purcell, the geniuses of the age.

SIZE: 58 x 47.75 inches inc. frame.
PROVENANCE: Private Berkshire Collection for many years

SOLD....Portrait of a Lady, traditionally identified as ...

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Oil on oak panel in an 18th century gilded frame bearing a collection number.
Inscribed upper left "1574" and upper right "Aetatis" (at the age of), the age is missing as the panel has been altered on this edge.
Mary Stuart would have been 32 years old at that time and that looks about right for the sitter.
Image 5 shows an image of Mary as Queen Dauphiness of France by Francois Clouet at the age of sixteen and there does seem to be a resemblance between the young girl and the mature woman.
It is possible that the portrait was painted in the early 17th century when James Stuart, Mary's son, was on the Scottish and English thrones and Mary's image was revamped from traitor to martyr.
Of course, it may also be that the sitter was a noblewoman who looked like Mary. There are so many images claimed to be of her and so many artists depicted her in their own way...half the portraits seem to bear no resemblance to each other, especially the 18th and 19th century ones.
This portrait came from the old collection of an ancient and noble Scottish family and was in that collection for almost 100 years. Verso a manuscript pen and ink label is inscribed " Mary Queen of Scots by Mark Garrard" (Marcus Gheeraerts)

Regardless of the identity of the sitter this remains a beautiful and highly skilled portrait of an attractive and very wealthy noble lady.

FRANCOIS CLOUET (c. 1510 – 22 December 1572), son of Jean Clouet, was a French Renaissance miniaturist and painter, particularly known for his detailed portraits of the French ruling family. His work is remarkable for the elaborate finish of all the details, the extreme accuracy of the drawing, and the exquisite completeness of the whole portrait.

SIZE: Panel 18.5 x 13.75 inches.
Framed size: 26 x 21.5 inches.
PROVENANCE: Old collection of an ancient and noble Scottish family.


SOLD....Portrait of Dorothy Coventry, Lady Pakington c.1650: ...

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Oil on canvas in period carved and giltwood frame.

Unusually for a portrait of this age the canvas has never been lined and is supported by the original stretchers held together by handmade iron clout nails.

The sitter, traditionally known as Lady Pakington, looks confidentally at the viewer, her hair, pearls and silk clothing the last word in fashion at the time.

DOROTHY COVENTRY (1623-1679) was the daughter of Sir Thomas Coventry and Elizabeth Aldersley. Sir Thomas was Keeper of the Great Seal and a Privy Counsellor.
Dorothy married Sir John Pakington of Westwood, Worcestershire. This magnificent country house remained in the family from the time of Henry VIII intill 1906. (see image 5).
Sir John was imprisoned in the Tower of London by Parliament for his Royalist convictions; he was fined the colossal sum of £5000 and had his estate confiscated and his Buckinghamshire house was demolished.
Undeterred, on his release, he fought in the Battle of Worcester in 1651 where he was captured and fined again...this time £7670.
After the Restoration he became MP for worcestershire.

Like her husband, a fervent Royalist, Dorothy shared in the circulation of religious and philosophical manuscripts around the King's chaplain Henry Hammond. She was thought by her contempories to be the authoress of "The Whole Duty of Man".

("The Whole Duty of Man" is an English Protestant devotional work, first published anonymously, with an introduction by Henry Hammond, in 1658. It was both popular and influential for two centuries, in the Anglican tradition it helped to define.
The consensus view of modern scholars is that the likely author was Richard Allestree, but at the time of publication (towards the end of the Interregnum) the Royalist High Church tradition it represents was a politically dangerous position. The authorship was well concealed.)

Lady Pakington is buried in the church at Hampton Lovett, Worcestershire, her memorial is inscribed at the foot of a monument to her husband.

Aliases: Theodore Rousel; Theodore Rousseel; Theodore Roussel; Theodore Russel.
Born in London, his father, Nicasius, was a goldsmith and jeweller, who left Bruges for England about 1573 and settled in the parish of St Anne, Blackfriars, London; his second wife, Theodore’s mother, was the sister of Cornelis Jonson van Ceulen.
The Russells were connected with the Gheeraerts, de Critz and Oliver families. Theodore’s son, Anthony Russell, who provided George Vertue with information concerning 17th-century artists, stated that Theodore had studied under Jonson and van Dyck, had been employed by such patrons as the 3rd Earl of Essex and the 1st Earl of Holland, and ‘was a lover of ease & his Bottle’.

SIZE: 21 x 18 inches inc. frame.
PROVENANCE: English private collection for many years.
VERSO:old ink inscription: 'Lady Pakington, daughter of the Lord Keeper Coventry, Authoress of the Whole Duty of Man'

Portrait of Sir John Leigh c.1675; Attributed ...

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Oil on canvas in a carved gilt wood and composition frame.

This portrait of Sir John Leigh has a very direct feel, the sitter looking out with a level gaze.
Which branch of the Leigh family belongs to the sitter is not known for certain, though it may be the Sir John Leigh of Addington, Surrey, who died in 1737. Addington House was the home of the Leighs from the early 1500s until the death of Sir John when its ownership was disputed in a court of law for 40 years. In the early 1800s it became, after total rebuilding, Addington Palace, as a country home for the Archbishop of Canterbury.

JOHN GREENHILL (c.1644-1676), was an English born portrait painter whose initial training is unknown but who rivalled the leading London artists of the seventeenth century.

The Restoration of King Charles II (1630-85) stimulated an upheaval within the cultural sphere, in particular artistic patronage. Portrait painters such as Sir Peter Lely quickly found favour amongst the highest ranks of society, and as a result many continental artists migrated to England in a bid to win the patronage of the monarch, prosperous courtiers and powerful statesmen. Greenhill was amongst very few English artists able to compete with the popularity and skill of foreign artists and just one month before his premature death, he was still considered one of the most talented portrait painters of the age.

Of all the artists to emerge from the studio of Sir Peter Lely (1618-80) – the dominant artist in England in the late seventeenth century – John Greenhill was, as George Vertue noted, “the most excellent.” He is known to have joined Lely’s studio by 1662, but seems to have left fairly soon afterwards to establish his own practice. Vertue claimed that Lely was jealous of his pupil’s ability. He was commissioned to paint a number of leading figures of the court, including Anne, Duchess of York, and even the King. However, his dissolute lifestyle led to the end of promising career – he died barely into his thirties, after falling into a gutter, drunk, in Long Acre, leaving a wife and young family behind.

SIZE: 36.25 x 31.25 inches including the frame.
PROVENANCE: Deceased London estate related to the sitter. His name is known through a 1950s insurance valuation of this painting and a companion portrait of his wife which was inscribed verso.


SOLD...Portrait of a bibliophile; English School, 17th ...

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English School, 17th Century
Portrait of a bibliophile, half-length, seated in a library with a folio, a seal in his left hand
inscribed 'HISTOR. THE FIFTH' (on the book)

oil on canvas in carved and giltwood period frame

The inscription 'HISTOR. THE FIFTH' on the folio in this portrait could relate to a reprint of Shakespeare's Henry V by the likes of a stationer such as Robert Allot or Thomas Cotes (both of whom published the Second Folios of Shakespeare's plays in the 1630s).
The costume of the sitter would appear to date to around the 1630s-1640s, but the handling of the paint itself would suggest that the picture is likely to date to the second half of the 17th Century.

CANVAS SIZE: 43¼ x 58 in.
PROVENANCE: Rev. Warrington of Bath; Christie's, London, 30 April 1951, lot 103 as 'Jackson'.

Portrait of James FitzJames, Duke of Berwick ...

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Oil on canvas in a fine quality carved and giltwood reproduction 17th century frame.

JAMES FITZJAMES, 1st Duke of Berwick, 1st Duke of Fitz-James, 1st Duke of Liria and Jérica (21 August 1670 – 12 June 1734) was an Anglo-French military leader, illegitimate son of King James II of England by Arabella Churchill, sister of the 1st Duke of Marlborough.
His father was a recent convert to Catholicism and Fitzjames was schooled at a succession of Catholic colleges in France between 1677 and 1686. After his education he shuttled between Britain and the armies of the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold I, fighting in what is now Hungary and Austria.

Following his father’s accession to the throne, Fitzjames was made Duke of Berwick upon Tweed, and appointed Colonel of the 8th Regiment of Foot and the Royal Horse Guards. When Prince William of Orange landed in 1688 to seize the English throne, the 18-year-old Berwick fled to France, seeking refuge at the royal court of King Louis XIV.

Berwick served in James II’s unsuccessful campaign in Ireland, commanding the cavalry on the Jacobite right wing at the Battle of the Boyne in 1690. He took temporary overall command of the Jacobite force until being recalled to France in January 1691. Berwick volunteered for service in the French campaign in the Low Countries, but was captured at Landen in 1693 by another of his uncles, George Churchill. In 1696, after his release from captivity, he secretly visited England for a week to foment a rising against William III.

After his first wife’s death, Berwick spent time touring Italy in 1698. He married again in 1700 and became a naturalised French subject in 1703. Berwick was appointed commander of the French force sent to Spain to assist Louis XIV’s grandson, Philip V. On his arrival in Spain in 1704, he was also made captain-general of Spain’s army and a Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece.

In 1706 Berwick was made a Marshal of France and sent to Spain again, retaking Madrid and Lerida and inflicting a crushing defeat on Galway’s force at Almanza on the Spanish coast. A French cavalry assault destroyed or captured all but 5,000 of Galway’s 22,000-strong force. Philip V rewarded Berwick with two Spanish dukedoms before he left Spain to campaign in northern France.
Berwick found it difficult to co-operate with the French general Vendome and in 1709 he shifted theatre again, this time to France’s border with Piedmont and then to Flanders and Spain once again. In 1715 James II’s legitimate son, James Stuart, the ‘Old Pretender’, landed in Scotland, triggering the First Jacobite Rebellion. He appointed Berwick Captain-General of the Jacobite forces in Scotland. However, the French King forbade Berwick from taking up the post. Berwick campaigned one last time in Spain in 1719 but had largely fallen from favour in both the French and Jacobite courts. His final command was of the French forces sent across the Rhine in October 1733. Inspecting the siege works at Philippsburg, he was killed by a cannon ball on 12 June 1734.

JOHN MICHAEL WRIGHT (May 1617 – July 1694) Described variously as English and Scottish, Wright trained in Edinburgh under the Scots painter George Jamesone, and acquired a considerable reputation as an artist and scholar during a long sojourn in Rome. There he was admitted to the Accademia di San Luca. He took up permanent residence in England from 1656, and served as court painter before and after the English Restoration. A convert to Roman Catholicism, he was a favourite of the restored Stuart court, a client of both Charles II and James II. In the final years of the Stuart monarchy he returned to Rome.

SIZE: 50.5 x 41 inches inc. frame
PROVENANCE: *Collection of James H. Van Alen, New York.
*Private Collection, England.


SOLD....Portrait of a Young Woman as Selene, ...

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Oil on canvas in modern giltwood frame, signed, bottom right, 'MULLER MELA.'

This exquisite portrait of a beautiful young woman depicts her as Selene, the Moon Goddess.

Shown in profile, with closed eyes, the sitter conveys a feeling of tranquility and an intriguing sense of both the erotic and the innocent.
Moonstones in her hair represent the stars, the gleaming robe of the Milky Way is around her and she holds a corn plant... vitally important as a constituent of bread - the staff of life. Corn also symbolised plenty.

In Greek mythology Selene was the daughter of Hyperion and Theia, the sister of Helios the Sun God and Eos the Dawn.
Selene, "the eternally beautiful", is one of the triple goddesses of the Moon: Artemis - the waxing moon, Selene - the full moon, and Hecate - the waning moon.

Selene is the mother goddess...a symbol of womanhood, and is represented by the full moon, where she is at the height of her reproductive potential.
Known to the Romans as Luna, she is responsible for the germination of seeds and new crops.
The days of the full and new moon were set aside for her worship.
The calenders and rituals of her worship helped people to measure time to know when it was best for planting and harvesting.

Appropriately for a goddess who represents the life force she was known for her many love affairs.
The moonstone is her gem and her colour is silver, grey white.

MELA (MELANIE) MULLER was born in Budapest in 1879 and died in 1933.
At the present there is little information available on this talented Hungarian painter and her works seem to be very rare.

SIZE: 33 x 29.5 inches inc. frame.
*Sold Sotheby's, lot 144, 4 May 1988.
*Hampshire Private Collection.


SOLD...Portrait of a French Noblewoman (possibly Louise ...

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Oil on canvas in early 19th c. frame.

Louise Renée de Penancoët de Kérouaille, 1st Duchess of Portsmouth, Countess of Fareham, Baroness Petersfield in the English peerage and Duchesse d'Aubigny in France. (1649 – 1734).
Considered by the taste of the time to be a great beauty, she became a mistress of Charles II for which service she was rewarded with titles, wealth and status; their son, Charles, was created Duke of Richmond and Lennox.
After the death of King Charles in 1685 the Duchess fell from favour in England and retired to France where she lived on her estates at Aubigny.

Louise, like Charles's other mistresses, was a 'pin-up' of her day and many versions of her portraits were sold in England and France.
Among her descendants are Lady Diana Spencer, Princess of Wales; Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Sarah, Duchess of York.

PIERRE MIGNARD (1610-95) French Court portraitist. All the beauties and celebrities of his day sat to him. His readiness and skill, plus his happy instinct for grace of arrangement, made him popular and his style very influential.
His portrait of Louise painted in 1682, when she made a triumphant visit to France, is in the National Portrait Gallery.

SIZE: 34.5 x 27.5 inches inc. frame.

PROVENANCE: Private Collection.

Portrait of a Lady c.1710; Attributed to ...

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Oil on canvas in period carved giltwood frame.
The frame bears the attribution 'Sir G. Kneller' although this is more likely a work by Michael Dahl.

The unknown sitter, an attractive young woman, looks our at the viewer with an aristocratic hauteur.

This is the age of the 'Augustan' portrait (1690-1744) when the sitter expected to be 'elevated'...an expression of gravitas behind which was culture and intelligence. This was the English way...not for them the smiling, sometimes simpering, expressions painted by the French.

Joseph Addison, famous essayist, poet, playwright and politician and a man of letters sneeringly described French portraits as "very remarkable for their smiles and a certain smirking Air...bestowed indifferently on every Age and Degree of either sex. The Toujours Gai appeared even in Judges, Bishops and Privy Counsellors...every part of the Dress was in a Flutter, and endeavoured to distinguish itself above the rest."

MICHAEL DAHL (1659 - 1743).
Dahl was a painter of exceptional talent and regarded as the only really serious rival to Sir Godfrey Kneller, for royal patronage, during the years 1690-1714. Dahl's patterns were undoubtedly indebted to the fashion set by Kneller, but Dahl had a lighter palette, his brushwork applied in shorter and more careful strokes.
His self portrait hangs in the National Portrait Gallery and he is famed for having painted a series of wonderful female portraits for the Duke of Somerset, now at Petworth House, and known as the Petworth Beauties.
Dahl's portraits of members of the royal family hang at Kensington Palace and Windsor and other examples of his work can be found at the Tate and National Maritime Museum, Greenwich.

Our thanks to James Mulraine, art historian.

SIZE: 37 x 32 inches inc. frame.
PROVENANCE: Sussex Private Collection.