Elizabeth of York
Maria of Aragon
Portrait of Arthur Prince of Wales, c.1509
«It is difficult to exaggerate the rarity and the importance of this small royal portrait. When discovered it was described by Catherine MacLeod, curator of sixteenth and seventeenth century portraits at the National Portrait Gallery, as ‘the only surviving portrait of Arthur that could have been painted within his lifetime,’ which means that it is one of the earliest surviving easel portraits in British art.»
«From the sitter’s age it is apparent that this portrait was executed in the concluding stages of the marriage negotiations, and by costume may be dated to c.1500. The association with the Prince’s marriage is especially probable when one considers the flower that he is depicted holding. The white gillyflower traditionally connotes betrothal and purity, by reason of its colour, and kingship, by reason of the coronet-like shape of its flowers. The identification of this motif is confirmed by the description of this panel in a seventeenth century inventory of the Royal Collection, compiled between 1637 and 1640 by Abraham van der Doort, Keeper of the Royal Pictures to Charles I:
A Whithall peece
Item the i5th being Princ Arthure in his minoritye
In a black cap and goulden habbitt houlding in his right
hand a white gillifloore in a reed pintit goulden frame»
Katherine of Aragon
In this portrait in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, we see Maria Portinari wearing a similar necklace.
«The Patron: Tommaso di Folco Portinari (1428–1501) was a member of a prominent Florentine family who emigrated to Bruges to eventually become the branch manager of the Medici bank there. In about 1470, when he was about forty-two, he married Maria Maddelena Baroncelli (born Maria di Francesco Bandini Baroncelli in 1456), a mere fourteen-year-old from another leading Florentine family. They lived in elegant style in one of the grandest houses in Bruges, the Bladelinhof, which also served as Tommaso’s business offices beginning in 1466. Portinari was a strong supporter and patron of the reformed Observant branch of the Franciscan order, highly fashionable in Bruges at the time, which also received the court patronage of Margaret of York and Isabella of Portugal. In addition, he worshipped at the church of Saint James, located near the Prinsenhof and frequented by Dukes Philip the Good and Charles the Bold when they visited Bruges. Portinari was in fact a generous patron of Saint James’s church, particularly contributing to its rebuilding in the 1460s and 1470s. He was granted a funerary chapel there which he decorated lavishly. Tommaso was associated with the prestigious Confraternity of the Dry Tree, a cult promoted by the Franciscans that drew its membership from the elite society of Bruges—courtiers, foreign merchants, patrician families, and distinguished artists such as Petrus Christus and Gerard David. Portinari was a leading patron of the arts and commissioned important works from the most highly sought-after artists of his day. Among these works are Hans Memling’s Passion of Christ (Galleria Saubauda, Turin) and The Met’s Portinari portraits, as well as Hugo van der Goes’s Portinari Triptych (Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence) and perhaps a lost Crucifixion.
Tommaso Portinari began working at the Bruges branch of the Medici bank in about 1440, when he was only about twelve years old. Advancing slowly, due to apparent opposition from Cosimo il Vecchio de’ Medici, Portinari did not become the branch manager and a full partner in the bank until 1465. Around the same time, Tommaso held an increasingly privileged position at court, participated in diplomatic affairs, and became a confidant of the future Duke Charles the Bold. By 1464 he was serving as the “faithful councilor” to Philip the Good, a position that he continued when Charles the Bold succeeded Philip at his death in 1467. During Portinari’s tenure at the Medici bank in Bruges, he made large and extremely risky unsecured loans to Duke Charles the Bold that were never fully repaid, eventually leading to the demise of the bank. The Bruges branch closed in 1480, and in 1497 Tommaso and his wife returned to Florence where he died in 1501. Tommaso was buried in the church of Sant’Egidio, on the high altar of which was Hugo van der Goes’s Portinari Triptych. Sant’Egidio was part of the hospital of Santa Maria Nuova.
The Commission: The portraits of Tommaso Portinari and Maria Baroncelli were most likely commissioned around the time of the couple’s wedding in 1470. Originally they formed a triptych with an image of the Virgin between them.
The portraits of Tommaso and Maria, of course, were intended as representations not solely of the couple’s piety; they also express their social status and connections at court. The couple are dressed in the height of fashion. Franke compares the appearance of the Portinaris with that of Charles the Bold and Isabella of Bourbon in two anonymous portraits (mid-sixteenth-century copies of fifteenth-century portraits, Museum voor Schone Kunsten, Ghent; fig. 3), noting that the couples not only resemble each other, but the costumes and haircuts of the men are quite similar, as are the necklaces, necklines, and hennins of the women. Just as the initials of Charles and Isabella decorate the latter's hennin, the initials of Maria and Tommaso were once visible on Maria’s hennin (as discussed below). Maria in particular wears an ostentatious necklace very similar to one worn by Margaret of York, the third wife of Charles the Bold, at her wedding in 1468, which Tommaso and Maria attended (fig. 4).»
Mary I Tudor
William Carey and Mary Boleyn
Sir Thomas Wyatt the Younger
Anne Stanhope, Duchess of Somerset
«Oil painting on canvas, Anne Stanhope, Duchess of Somerset (?1497-1587), aged 16 (in the manner of Bernaert van Orley) by Thomas Youngerman Gooderson (fl.1846-1868), inscribed across top of painting: THE . DVTCHES . OF . SOMERSET . / ÆTATIS . HER . GRACE, / SVE . I6. A head-and-shoulders portrait of a young woman, turned slightly to the right, gazing to the right, wearing a white coif, brown dress, with dark brown fur collar and with a small chain round her neck and hanging chain tucked into the white triangle of her bodice. The original at Syon House looks Flemish c.1530-90 but is probably not of an English sitter.»
The above engraving is perhaps the most famous image of Anne Stanhope, Duchess of Somerset.
«Portrait of the Duchess of Somerset, three quarter length, nearly full face, standing, holding gloves and miniature; from a picture formerly at Strawberry Hill; after A More; No X in a set of plates; vignette Stipple on chine collé»
This engraving must be based on the same portrait as the engraving above.
Anne Stanhope, Duchess of Somerset
This portrait must be the one the above two engravings are based on and that was in Horace Walpole's Strawberry Hill Collection:
«1774 Description: Anne Stanhope duchess of Somerset, second wife of the protector, whose portrait she holds in one hand: a present to Mr. Walpole from Mr. Bateman.»
Anne Stanhope, Duchess of Somerset?
Possible identification is based on the similarity to the Chevening Portrait above. Facial similarity, but also the unusually large hands and arms in both portraits. The fashion is also similar, and entirely in keeping with when Anne Stanhope, Duchess of Somerset would have been at the age of the lady in this portrait.
The sitter is clearly not Mary I Tudor.
Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk
Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey
Margaret Wotton, Marchioness of Dorset
Elizabeth Grey, Lady Audley
Frances Brandon, Duchess of Suffolk?
«The sitter has been linked tentatively to Frances Brandon, Duchess of Suffolk. A portrait at Petworth (see Collins Baker, 'Catalogue of the Petworth Collection of Pictures', 1920) appears to represent the same woman on a larger scale and is inscribed with the date 1560 and the sitter's age (24). Another version of the portrait is in the Duke of Sutherland's collection.»
After having gone to considerable trouble to get a hold of a copy of this book, it does not even contain a picture of this other supposed portrait. I would like to determine for myself whether or not this is another version of the same portrait, and the same woman, people in earlier times being notoriously more lax about these matters.
There is an entry (for what must be the portrait referred to above) which simply reads:
«FLEMISH SCHOOL (XVITH CENTURY)»
«194 A Lady holding her Gloves (1560)
Half length, three-quarters left. Aquiline nose, chestnut hair, yellow lace ruff and cuffs, dark brown bodice with furred collar and sleeves, brown chequered under-sleeves and black bonnet. Her gloves in her hands, a bouquet of red and white flowers on her breast, green background. Inscribed: “AN DNI 1560 AETA 24.”
WOOD, 13½ by 10¾ in.
On the back: “1748. No. 21.” Formerly catalogued as by Marc Gerard. L. Cust assigns it to Hans Ewoouts (Walpole. Soc., vol. ii, p. 31. pl. xxx(b)).»
Collins Baker, 'Catalogue of the Petworth Collection of Pictures', 1920, p.42-43
And that's it.
The portrait referred to does not appear to be in the Petworth Collection today, which is now a part of the National Trust, though I could refind nearly every painting mentioned in the book in it today.
Of course, if the lady in the painting was 24 in 1560, she was born in 1535/6, and could not possibly be lady Frandon Brandon.
It couldn't possibly be this portrait, could it?
This portrait was sold by Christie's on the the 3rd of November 1972 as lot 189. Provenance is given as the 5th Duke of Sutherland. That must be George Sutherland-Leveson-Gower, 5th Duke of Sutherland (1888 – 1963).
At first appearance there is not anything to link either him, or the painting, to Petworth.
However, the painting fits the above description perfectly:
«FLEMISH SCHOOL (XVITH CENTURY)»
«194 A Lady holding her Gloves (1560) Half length, three-quarters left. Aquiline nose, chestnut hair, yellow lace ruff and cuffs, dark brown bodice with furred collar and sleeves, brown chequered under-sleeves and black bonnet. Her gloves in her hands, a bouquet of red and white flowers on her breast, green background. Inscribed: “AN DNI 1560 AETA 24.” WOOD, 13½ by 10¾ in. On the back: “1748. No. 21.” Formerly catalogued as by Marc Gerard. L. Cust assigns it to Hans Ewoouts (Walpole. Soc., vol. ii, p. 31. pl. xxx(b)).»
If we compare it to the description of the portrait given by Christie's we see that the inscription and even the dimensions are precisely the same.
Follower of Hans Eworth Portrait of a lady, aged 24, small half-length, in a black fur-trimmed dress and white ruff with inscription and date 'ANDNI 1560/AETA.24.' (upper right) oil on panel 14 x 11 in. (35.6 x 27.9 cm.)
Most curious. Like I said, most of the paintings recoreded in the Catalogue of the Petworth Collection of Pictures is still in the collection today. Reading over the description in the Royal Collection again answered that seemingly unsolvable mystery. 'Another version of the portrait is in the Duke of Sutherland's collection.'
Ah. They must have meant that another version of the Petworth portrait was in the Duke of Sutherland's collection. This must be that version.
I still wonder what happened to the Petworth version and where it is today, and would dearly like to see it.
My initial hunch proved correct. I remain unconvinced, but open to the possibility that this is the same woman.
J. Stephan Edwards dismisses the possibility of the portrait in the Royal Collection being Frances Brandon, Duchess of Suffolk on account that it dates to no earlier than 1560, based on the starched ruff (starched ruffs were introduced into England no earlier than 1560). Frances died late in 1559, so any portrait of her must necessarily have been produced before the summer of 1559 at the very latest, before starched ruffs came to England.
I have tried to trace the development of ruffs in England on the 1550s and 1560s page.
To my mind, however, the ruff the woman in the Portrait of a Woman sometimes identified as the Duchess of Suffolk is wearing looks precisely like the one Walter Devereux, 1st Earl of Essex (1541 – 1576) is wearing in the below portrait of him painted in 1572, now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
The painting style even seems similar.
His wife Lettice Knollys, Countess of Essex and Countess of Leicester (1543 – 1634) was born on the 8th of November 1543, however, so the portrait cannot be of her, thus negating any thoughts that the portrait in the Royal Collection may have been a pendant to the one of Walter Devereux, 1st Earl of Essex.
Instead I believe that I have conclusively identified the lady in it on my The Pagets page.
But what then of the original of the Sutherland Portrait, the one at Petworth in 1920 and attributed to Hans Eworth by Lionel Cust?
It would appear that when HM Government in the 1950s accepted a portion of Petworth’s art collection in lieu of inheritance tax (the first arrangement of its kind), the Egremonts did keep some of the art collection.
So it may still be privately owned by the Egremonts.
Another possibility is that they sold it off.
The portrait below was at Petworth in 1920.
«FRENCH SCHOOL (c. 1560)
336 Lady in a White and Brown Cap
Half length three-quarters left ; auburn hair, gold-brown cap with white and gold crown, deep black-green bodice, with gold border, full white sleeves, rose and gold embroidered cuffs and white undersleeves. Pearl and gold necklace and fine gold chain ; green curtain, left.
Wood, 8 by 6¾ in.
Formerly catalogued as by Van Leyden. On back : "292 A. Godolphin May 4, 1738" and "Hugford."»
Collins Baker, Catalogue of the Petworth Collection of Pictures (1920), p.45
There is a black and white photograph of this portrait in the book, so it is definitely this one.
This portrait is called Dorothy, Lady Dormer by Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger, c. 1596.
According to gogm, it's a 1590s lady, traditionally identified as Lady Denman, portrait sold by Christie's.
Wikipedia provides the information that there is an inscription at top left reading Ye Lady Dormer and identifies the portrait as Portrait of Dorothy, Lady Dormer (1577 - ?), daughter of Sir Robert, 1st Baron Dormer, of Wing (1552-1616) and wife of Henry Hudleston of Sawston.
Dorothy Dormer Hudleston (b. 1577) would never have been known as Lady Dormer, however.
The two likeliest candidates based on the title and the fashions of the sitter in the portrait are:
DOROTHY CATESBY (c.1527-September 30, 1613)
Dorothy Catesby was the daughter of Anthony Catesby of Whiston, Northamptonshire (c.1500-October 10,1554) and Isabel Pigott. In about 1550, Dorothy married Sir William Dormer of Eythorpe and Wing, Buckinghamshire (c.1503-May 17, 1575). The Dormers were a Catholic family and sheltered priests during the reign of Edward VI. When Elizabeth Tudor took the throne, Dormer’s daughter by his first marriage, Jane, married a Spanish duke and moved to Spain. Dormer’s mother settled in the Netherlands. The family in England were under suspicion. Dormer was listed as a “hinderer” of Protestant religion in the 1560s and was on a list of alleged supporters of Mary Queen of Scots in 1574. Dorothy’s children by Dormer were Katherine (c.1550-March 23, 1615), Robert (January 26,1551-November 8, 1616), Margaret (1553-April 26,1637), Mary (c.1555-1637), Richard, Frances, Anne, and Peregrine. Magna Carta Ancestry adds Grizzel and Amphyllis and omits all sons except Robert. After Dormer’s death, Dorothy took as her second husband Sir William Pelham (c.1530-November 24, 1587), by whom she had one son, William. Pelham died of wounds suffered in battle at Flushing. Dorothy founded an almshouse in Wing, Buckinghamshire in 1596. She died at Eythorpe. Biography: Oxford DNB entry under “Pelham [née Catesby; other married name Dormer], Dorothy.” Portrait: alabaster effigy in Wing Church, Buckinghamshire; portrait c. 1596 by Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger.
If this is a wedding portrait due to the intertwined wines, it could be painted around the time of Dorothy's second marriage to Sir William Pelham, sometime between the death of Sir William Pelham on the 24th of November 1587 and the death of her first husband on the 17th May 1575.
The black and yellow pattern of the lady's stomacher does complement the yellow and black of Sir William Pelham's armour in the portrait on his Wikipedia page.
The other candidate is Elizabeth Browne, daughter of Anthony Browne, 1st Viscount Montagu and Magdalen Dacre. She was the half-sister of Mary Browne, Countess of Southampton whose portrait is shown further up on this page. Elizabeth (d.1631) was married to Dorothy's son Robert Dormer, 1st Baron Dormer.
AE (interlocked) TA (interlocked) 19 upper right; dated 1581 upper left
By 1733, gallery of the Princes of Liechtenstein, Vienna [see note]; 1918, removed from the gallery and taken to Schloss Valtice (Feldsberg), present-day Czech Republic; 1922, sold by the Princes of Liechtenstein to Glückselig (dealer), Vienna. William Sturgis Bigelow (b. 1850 - d. 1926), Boston; 1927, bequest of William Sturgis Bigelow to the MFA. (Accession Date: March 22, 1927)
NOTE: Information about the movement of the painting within the Liechtenstein collection and its sale in 1922 was provided by Gustav Wilhelm, Director of the Liechtenstein Collection, in a letter to the MFA of December 30, 1955. The painting bears a seal from the Liechtenstein collection that dates from 1733. It was included in the Katalog der fürstlich Liechtensteinischen Bilder-Galerie im Gartenpalais der Rossau zu Wien (1885), cat. no. 77.»