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Our website was last updated on: 16 April 2014
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SOLD...Portrait of a Young Girl c.1700, by Robert Byng
Oil on canvas in 18th c. carved wood frame.

This beautiful portrait is a sophisticated and talented work, endearing in the frank gaze of the child, and technically accomplished...most notably in the skin tones and the treatment of the white linen.
The girl stands before an orange tree, these were an expensive luxury in Northern Europe, coming as they did from the warm South. The tree shows the wealth of the girl's family but also has considerable symbolic significance.

The orange tree bears leaves, flowers and fruit all at the same time. The leaves, which are evergreen, are the symbol of eternal love, the white flowers represent purity and generosity of spirit and the ripening fruit represent hope for the future of a family or dynasty.

Robert Byng (1666 - 1720) was born in Wiltshire, but is buried in Oxford where he died in 1720, having lived there since before 1714.
He was a pupil of,and very strongly influenced by, Sir Godfrey Kneller (Principal Painter to the King and the most distinguished Baroque portraitist in England).
Byng's earliest dated portraits are c.1697; one of his younger brothers, Edward, was drapery painter to Kneller and his principal assistant.

Size: 36.5 x 31.25 inches inc. period frame.

Provenance: a Norfolk Private Collection.
Ref: 8388
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of a Young Lady c. 1690/1710; Circle of Kneller
Oil on canvas in elaborate gilded frame.

A charming portrait of a young lady wearing the daring 'undress' so fashionable at the time.
The sitter looks out at the viewer with a confident, almost amused expression; her right hand is touching her head...in portraiture a symbol of thought.

SIR GODFREY KNELLER (1646-1723) was the most distinguished painter of baroque portraits in England.
Born in Lubeck, he trained with Bol and Rembrandt, coming to London in 1676.
By 1679 he had painted the King and remained the most famous and successful portrait painter in England until his death.
In 1688 he was made Principal Painter to the King and was knighted in 1692 and a made a baronet in 1715.
His style had a profound influence on British portraiture and a large number of artists, some very talented in their own right, emulated his fashionable style.

SIZE: 13.75 x 11.75 inches canvas.
21.25 x 19 inches inc. frame.
PROVENANCE: Private Collection, a Norfolk Country House.

Ref: 8547
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of a Young Lady c.1690. Attributed to Henry Tilson
Oil on canvas.

This charming portrait has the amusing conceit of the sitter reaching out of the cartouche within which she is painted. She holds flowers, which signify youth, beauty, innocence and their fleeting nature.

HENRY TILSON (1659-1695) was born to a minor gentry family. He was a pupil and later assistant to Sir Peter Lely (Principal Painter to the King). He then worked with Kneller; by 1690 he had established a successful practice in portraits in a style between Kneller and Riley, being known as 'a painter of great charm'.
Tragically he committed suicide at the age of 36 after a love affair ended. His work can be seen in The British Museum; London Guildhall Art Gallery; The National Gallery of Ireland etc.

SIZE: 37 x 32 inc. frame
PROVENANCE: Collection of Sir Elton John.
Ref: 8325
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of a Young Lady c.1700; Follower of Kneller
Oil on canvas in a good carved and giltwood period frame.

A charming portrait of a young lady c.1700, absolutely typical of its period and painted by an artist strongly influenced by the style of the dominant portraitist of the time. As was the fashion, the sitter is depicted within a feigned oval

SIR GODFREY KNELLER (1646-1723) was the most distinguished painter of baroque portraits in England.
Born in Lubeck, he trained with Bol and Rembrandt, coming to London in 1676.
By 1679 he had painted the King and remained the most famous and successful portrait painter in England until his death.
In 1688 he was made Principal Painter to the King and was knighted in 1692 and a made a baronet in 1715.
His style had a profound influence on British portraiture and a large number of artists, some very talented in their own right, emulated his fashionable style.

SIZE: 37 x 33 inches inc. frame.
A number of small damages to the frame, regardless of which is a fine one and the product of a highly skilled woodcarver.

PROVENANCE: A Private Collection on the Welsh/Shropshire border for c. 40 years.

Ref: 8463
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of a Young Lady c.1770; Circle of Sir Nathaniel Dance R.A.
Oil on canvas within a very fine 18th c. carved and giltwood frame.

This charming portrait of an aristocratic young woman is by a talented artist very strongly influenced by Dance.
The treatment of the cloth and the skin tones are particularly well painted.

The sitter radiates a sense of peace and calm; in her hands and to her left are flowers...jasmine and honeysuckle. In the Language of Flowers honeysuckle signifies sweetness of disposition, yellow jasmine is grace and elegance, and white jasmine represents amiability.

SIR NATHANIEL DANCE (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.
He was a Founder Member of the Royal Academy.
He became a baronet (changing his name to Dance-Holland) and inherited a fortune in the 1770s and gave up portrait painting in 1782, becoming an M.P. in 1790.

SIZE: 43 x 35 inches inc. frame.

PROVENANCE: English Private Collection.
Ref: 8245
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of an Officer of the 39th Regiment of Foot; c.1844-6, Anglo-Indian School
Oil on canvas in reproduction frame.

A good quality Victorian portrait of an officer of the 39th Foot, almost certainly a captain. His left hand rests on his sword hilt and he carries his shako; this is the Albert Pattern Shako which came into use in 1844 and was in use for eleven years. The white tufted ball on the shako was in use for two years from 1844-46 when it became white and red.
The 39th were in India in 1844 and had been for some years; the battalion came home to UK in 1847 and were initially stationed in Canterbury.
As the officer's shako decoration is the white ball discontinued in 1846, it seems most likely that this portrait was painted in India.
The officer is not wearing any medals, but the Battalion had taken part in the Battle of Maharajpore in 1843 for which a medal was awarded; however it is possible that they had not been presented when the painting was done.

Below is a list of the captains of the 39th at this time; the portrait is of one of them, but which one is not yet known:-
Henry Francis Stokes, Robert Newport Tinley, Arthur Herbert, Charles D Campbell, Henry Strachan, William Clarges Wolfe, Thomas Wright Hudson, Thomas Edward Willbraham, Edward Croker.

The 39th. Regiment of Foot was formed in 1702 and was the first regiment to serve in India, hence the motto 'Primus in Indis'.
In 1881 the 39th. Foot became the 1st. Battalion of the Dorset Regiment.

Our thanks to Nick Speakman, Researcher at The Keep Military Museum, Dorchester for his help with the above information.

SIZE: 26.5 x 22.25 inches inc. frame.
PROVENANCE: Private Collection, Canterbury, Kent.
Ref: 8476
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of an officer said to be Prince Rupert; English School c. 1665
Oil on canvas in 19th c. frame.

Thought to be Prince Rupert, the sitter looks confidently at the viewer; he wears armour and holds a baton...the symbol of high military rank.

PRINCE RUPERT, Count Palatine of the Rhine (1619 -1682)

Born in Prague, his mother was Elizabeth Stuart of England; whilst still a baby, his father, Frederick V, lost his crown in the Battle of the White Mountain against the Habsburg Emperor. Defeated, the royal family was given eight hours to flee Prague.
Thus began a life of exile and adventure; virtually penniless, at the age of twelve Rupert became a soldier. After fighting across Europe in the Thirty Years War he made his way to England, where he joined his uncle Charles l, at the outbreak of the Civil War.
For the next four years he was the king's most famous general. An imposing presence on the battlefield - he was six feet four inches tall - the prince was feared, hated and respected by his enemies in equal measure.
After the king's downfall in 1646 Rupert was banished from Britain. Still only 26 years old, he kept the Royalist cause alive with a handful of ships, and for a time lived as a pirate prince in the Caribbean.
After the Restoration of 1660 he returned to England to lead Charles ll's navy against the Dutch.
He was First Lord of the Admiralty from 1673-79.
In addition to his military life he was a
talented artist, scientist, inventor and classical scholar.He died on 29 November 1682 at his house at Spring Gardens near the Palace of Whitehall, and was buried in Westminster Abbey.
Prince Rupert was Duke of Cumberland and Earl of Holderness in the English peerage. He never married, but left two illegitimate children. His sister, Sophia, was the mother of George I, the first Hanoverian King of Britain.

SIZE: 37 x 30 inches inc. frame
30 x 25 inches canvas size
CONDITION: relined; some retouching to background; some retouching to the sitter; a small area of varnish discolouration on the breastplate; small dent to the canvas upper right; canvas size increased at top and bottom. All acceptable on a painting of this age. Frame has damages.
PROVENANCE: Private Collection, Derbyshire.

Ref: 8471
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of Anne, daughter of Lord Elphinstone, (later Lady Torphichen); Circle of Henry Tilson
17th century oil on canvas in Victorian gilt frame. The sitter depicted in a feigned oval.

The portrait bears a 19th c. inscription wrongly identifying the sitter as Anna, daughter of John, 11th Lord Elphinstone; on stylistic grounds (clothes, style of painting etc) this is clearly incorrect.
It seems likely that the sitter is Anne, daughter of Alexander, 6th Lord Elphinstone. Anne married Walter Sandilands, 6th Lord Torphichen on 11 April 1671.

The Elphinstones are an ancient noble Scottish family and have featured prominently in Scottish history since the 13th century. The present chief of the Clan is the 19th Lord.

Henry Tilson (1659-1695) was born in Lancashire or Yorkshire and came from the gentry; his grandfather was Bishop of Elphin.
He was a pupil of Lely until 1680, then worked with Kneller, becoming friends with Dahl. Tilson and Dahl travelled to Paris, Venice and Rome in 1684-8 studying the Old Masters
On his return to London he established a very successful practice with a style strongly influenced by Kneller.
In 1695 at the age of 36, when a love affair came to an end, he committed suicide.

Size: 29 x 24 inches canvas size
37.5 x 32.5 inches inc. frame

Provenance: by descent.
Verso: copperplate inscription on the stretcher. 19th c. Edinburgh framer's label.
Ref: 8404
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of Catherine of Braganza, wife of King Charles II c.1670; Studio or Circle of Lely
Oil on canvas in a Late Georgian frame.

A good portrait of Catherine of Braganza; a version 'in little' by Lely's Studio or Circle of a larger painting by Lely.
An image of this painting can be seen at the Bridgeman Art Library, the portrait is now in a private collection.
Lely's original drawing for this portrait is in the Hermitage State Museum, Russia and can be viewed online at the Hermitage Digital Collection.

This richly decorated portrait of Charles II's queen is a fine example of Lely's ability to produce a vibrant yet functional courtly image. The material of the dress and the movement captured in the drapery as well the contrasting textures of carved gold and smooth silk are fine examples of the artistic mastery for which Lely was famous. As a royal portrait, this image and duplications of it would have been used by loyal followers of the Court who wished to demonstrate their allegiance.

Catherine of Braganza (16381705) was a Portuguese princess and Queen consort of Charles II of England, whom she married in 1662, bringing Tangier and Bombay as part of her dowry. The marriage was childless and she had to tolerate the king's numerous and blatant infidelities.
As a Roman Catholic, she was unpopular and there were attempts to implicate her in the 'Popish Plot'.
King Charles died in 1685 and in 1692 Catherine returned to Portugal, where she later died.

(Our thanks to Rita Wierzbicki for her help in identifying the sitter, formerly thought to be Barbara Villiers).

SIR PETER LELY (1618 - 1680) was the most important portraitist in the reign of Charles ll. Principal Painter to the King, he painted everyone of importance, maintaining a busy and active Studio to help with the huge demand for his portraits.

SIZE: 36.5 x 33 inches framed
30.5 x 25.5 canvas size
18th c. frame has several damages.
PROVENANCE: Private Collection, London.
Ref: 8455
This item has been sold

SOLD...Portrait of Charles Le Brun c.1670; Circle of John Riley
Oil on canvas in carved giltwood frame.

CHARLES LE BRUN (1619-1691). French painter and art theorist, the dominant artist of Louis XIV's reign. After training with Vouet he went to Rome in 1642 and worked under Poussin, becoming a convert to the latter's theories of art. He returned to Paris in 1646. From 1661 he became established in the employ of Louis XIV, in 1662 he was raised to the nobility and named Premier Paintre du Roi, and in 1663 he was made director of the reorganized Academie, which he turned into a channel for imposing a codified system of orthodoxy in matters of art. His lectures came to be accepted as providing the official standards of artistic correctness.
Despite the Classicism of his theories, Lebrun's own talents lay rather in the direction of flamboyant and grandiose decorative effects. Among the most outstanding of his works for the king were the Galerie d'Apollon at the Louvre (1663), and the famous Galerie des Glaces (1679-84) and the Great Staircase (1671-78, destroyed in 1752) at Versailles. His importance in the history of French art is twofold: his contributions to the magnificence of the Grand Manner of Louis XIV and his influence in laying the basis of academicism. Many of the leading French artists of the next generation trained in his studio. Artists over the whole of Europe accepted this style as the paragon of academic and propagandistic art. Lebrun was a fine portraitist and an extremely prolific draughtsman.

JOHN RILEY (1646-1691) began practising painting at a young age, which probably meant he was independently wealthy. He became a fashionable society portrait painter. At the height of his success, in the 1680s, Riley charged 40 for a full-length portrait, a considerable amount of money at this time. In 1689, together with Godfrey Kneller, he was appointed Principal Painter to King William III and Queen Mary.

SIZE: 35 x 30.25 inches inc. frame
PROVENANCE: Collection of Viscount Halifax,
given by him to Madame R. de l' Hopital.
Bought by Dr. William Lindsay Gordon at Christie's, 26 January 1968, lot 73 as by Kneller.
Dr. Gordon was a true conoisseur of the decorative arts; he travelled England collecting antiques with a British heritage especially of the Stuart period.

Ref: 8501
This item has been sold

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