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    Sale 7744

    Old Masters & 19th Century Art Day Sale

    8 July 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 188

    Studio of Sir Peter Lely (Westphalia 1618-1680 London)

    Portrait of Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine, 1st Duchess of Cleveland (1640-1709), full-length, in a silver silk dress and green mantle

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    Studio of Sir Peter Lely (Westphalia 1618-1680 London)
    Portrait of Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine, 1st Duchess of Cleveland (1640-1709), full-length, in a silver silk dress and green mantle
    oil on canvas
    82½ x 52¾ in. (209.6 x 134 cm.)


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    Rumoured to have shared King Charles II's bed on the night of his coronation, Barbara Villiers bore the king at least six children, wielded significant influence in the first decade of his reign, and was created Duchess of Cleveland in 1670. Lely, who effectively acted as her principal promoter, is said to have remarked 'that it was beyond the compass of art to give this lady her due, as to her sweetness and exquisite beauty'.

    The present picture appears to be one of three versions of the composition; the others being in a private British collection (believed by Sir Ellis Waterhouse and John Kerslake to be autograph), and in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (described as 'Workshop').

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    Provenance

    Lady Duveen; Christie's, London, 31 July 1947, lot 114, as 'Vandyck' (6 gns. to Bode[?]).