The horizontally-fluted frame and pendant side husks relate to a frame attributed to John Linnell which surrounds a portrait by Batoni of 1766 and which is now in the Victoria and Albert Museum (H. Hayward and P. Kirkham, William and John Linnell, London, 1980, vol. II, p. 91, fig. 174.). The auricular frame with bold acanthus scrolls, also related to a pier glass pattern among the Linnell designs (ibid., pl. 193).
THE COUNTESS OF PORTARLINGTON
Winnafreda, Countess of Portarlington was the widow of the 6th Earl of Portarlington. He had sold the greater part of the contents of Emo Court, now in Co. Laois, in October 1920, and the estate itself in 1930. The several surviving 19th and early 20th century inventories of Emo Court are almost exclusively concerned with paintings, sculpture and French porcelain, the latter having passed by inheritance from Mrs Fitzherbert. Although it is possible that this pier-glass came from Emo Court, it is equally likely that it was bought by Lady Portarlington. She was the daughter of George Youll who had made a fortune in the frozen meat trade from Australia. Lady Portarlington's taste was praised by Barbara Cartland in Vogue in 1965, writing of her house that 'the eye is constantly interested but never jarred by what it sees'.