Willem Verelst (fl.1734-c.1756)
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Willem Verelst (fl.1734-c.1756)

Portrait of a Royal child, probably Princess Caroline Matilda (1751-1775), full-length, in a lace dress and bonnet, seated on a sofa draped with a blue velvet ermine-lined cloak , the sofa surmounted by the Prince of Wales's feather badge, in an interior

Details
Willem Verelst (fl.1734-c.1756)
Portrait of a Royal child, probably Princess Caroline Matilda (1751-1775), full-length, in a lace dress and bonnet, seated on a sofa draped with a blue velvet ermine-lined cloak , the sofa surmounted by the Prince of Wales's feather badge, in an interior
signed and indistinctly dated 'Wm. Verelst Pinxit 1753[?]' (lower left)
oil on canvas
49¾ x 40 in. (126.4 x 101.6 cm.)
Provenance
Lord Banbury of Southam; Christie's, London, 7 May 1937, lot 78, as 'signed and dated 1783' and of 'George IV, when a child' (9½ gns. to F. Howard).
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No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 17.5% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis

Lot Essay

The sitter is thought to be a child of Frederick, Prince of Wales (1707-1751), the most likely - assuming the date of the picture has been read correctly - being the youngest of his nine children, Caroline Matilda.

The Princess is seated beside a tassled bolster on Frederick, Prince of Wales's golden framed throne, that is draped with a stately gold- fringed hanging of red velvet. The Prince's coronet, displayed with his feather-plumed badge and motto, crowns the throne's triumphal-arched back. It is framed by Ceres' flower-issuing cornucopia, emblematic of Peace and Plenty, while palms wrap the sides of the throne, whose arm displays the festive head of a bacchic (British) lion.

The ornament of the throne, which stands beside an elegant Ionic pilastered niche crowned by the nature deity Venus's shell badge, reflects the Roman fashion promoted by the artist/architect William Kent (d.1748). Such ornament features in his work, including his designs for the Prince's State barge, published in J. Vardy's, 'Some Designs of Mr. Inigo Jones and Mr. William Kent', 1744.

The frame, with architectural flowered tablet corners in the George II Roman fashion, is carved in bas-relief with flowered and foliated ribbon-scrolls.
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