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Circle of Hans Holbein II (Augsburg 1497/8-1543 London)
SOLD BY ORDER OF THE EXECUTORS OF THE LATE MRS. T.E. NELSON
Circle of Hans Holbein II (Augsburg 1497/8-1543 London)

Portrait of a lady, half-length, in a white coif and green bodice with fur-trimmed sleeves, in a trompe-l'oeil architectural setting with putti

Details
Circle of Hans Holbein II (Augsburg 1497/8-1543 London)
Portrait of a lady, half-length, in a white coif and green bodice with fur-trimmed sleeves, in a trompe-l'oeil architectural setting with putti
oil on panel, marouflaged, shaped top
18 7/8 x 15¾ in. (48 x 40 cm.)
Provenance
Jane St. Maur Blanche, Marchioness Conyngham (1833-1907), 36 Belgrave Square, and The Mount, Ascot; (+) Christie's, London, 8 May 1908, lot 49, as 'Early Flemish School' (55 gns. to Robson).
Anonymous sale [Felix Joubert, London]; Christie's, London, 12 June 1925, lot 145, as 'Early Flemish School' (390 gns. to F. Sabin).
H. Perls, Paris, 1939, when certified by Friedländer as 'Hans Holbein II, c. 1535'.
Harold Harmsworth, 1st Viscount Rothermere (1868-1940), of Hemsted, Kent; his sale (+), Christie's, London, 6 December 1946, lot 64, as 'Hans Holbein' (7,000 gns. to the following).
with Thomas Agnew and Sons, London, from whom acquired as 'Jan Gossaert, called Mabuse' by William Urwick Goodbody (1883-1949), Invergarry House, Invernesshire, and by inheritance to his daughter, Mrs. T.E. Nelson, Achnacloich, Connel, Argyllshire.
Literature
Works of Art in the Collection of Viscount Rothermere, 1932, pl. 54, as 'Hans Holbein the Younger'.

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Lot Essay

This portrait is very likely to once have formed part of a diptych, facing a Virgin and Child or a Crucifixion, when it would have been used for private devotion. The other wing could alternatively have contained a portrait of the sitter's husband. The pose and dress of the sitter is rather close to that in Holbein's Portrait of a Woman in a white coif in the Detroit Institute of Art, which is also of similar dimensions. In the collection catalogue of Viscount Rothermere (op. cit.) the sitter is identified as a younger member of the family of an official at the court of Henry VIII who, with his wife, features in two small circular portraits by Holbein, now in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna (J. Rowlands, The paintings of Hans Holbein the Younger, Oxford, 1985, nos. 87 and 88). At the time that the Rothermere catalogue was written, the face and part of the background in this painting had been largely over painted. This over paint has subsequently been removed.

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