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    Sale 7633

    Old Master & British Pictures (Day Sale)

    3 December 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 192

    Thomas Gainsborough, R.A. (Sudbury 1727-1788 London)

    Portait of Elizabeth, wife of Richard Colvile (1737-1784), half-length, in a blue dress

    Price Realised  

    Thomas Gainsborough, R.A. (Sudbury 1727-1788 London)
    Portait of Elizabeth, wife of Richard Colvile (1737-1784), half-length, in a blue dress
    oil on canvas
    30¼ x 25¼ in. (76.8 x 64.2 cm.)


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    The sitter was the only daughter of Nathaniel Acton of Bramford Hall, Suffolk. In 1758, on reaching twenty-one, Elizabeth inherited Hemingtone Hall, Suffolk 'in lieu of money left to her in her father's will' ('Hemingstone Hall, Suffolk', Country Life, 3 May 2007, p. 142), and on her marriage a year later to Richard Colvile, of Newton Hall, Cambridgeshire, Hemingstone was part of her dowry. According to the Victoria County History: 'Richard Colvile had always had extravagant tastes, and even his wife's ample fortune did not keep him long out of difficulties' (cited in ibid.); he had to flee to Holland to escape his creditors, but eventually returned to Hemingstone, where he died in 1784.

    We are grateful to Hugh Belsey for his thoughts on this painting. While dated to circa 1755-7 by Waterhouse, Belsey suggests a slightly later date of circa 1758.

    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

    by descent in the family to General Colvile, 1875, by whom bequeathed to;
    The Kempsey Collection.
    Anonymous sale; Christie's, London, 20 November 1980, lot 107.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A DECEASED ESTATE (LOTS 24, 188-193)