14 October 1998
NATHANIEL HONE, R.A. (1718-1784)
Mary Wilkes, facing right in blue silk day-gown with lace-bordered white underslip, white cloak fastened at her right shoulder, drop pearl earring and pearls in her upswept curled brown hair; red curtain background
signed with monogram and dated 'NH 1753' (lower left) and signed and dated on the counter-enamel 'M. Wilkes, St. John's square Clerkenwell London. 1753 NHone Pinxt'
enamel on copper
oval, 1.7/8 in. (48 mm.) high, silver-gilt frame with glazed reverse
Christie's, London, 29 July 1975, lot 66 (£340).
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D. Foskett, Collecting Miniatures, Woodbridge, 1979, illustrated opp. p. 136, colour pl. 10E.
D. Foskett, Miniatures: Dictionary and Guide, Woodbridge, 1987, illustrated opp. p. 136, colour pl. 10E.
The address given on the counter-enamel is that of the politician John Wilkes (1727-1797). He married under age and against his family's wishes, Mary, daughter and heiress of John Mead, a wealthy London grocer who was ten years older than him. The marriage gave Wilkes notable wealth and the possession of an estate in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire which he kept along with custody of their daughter when the marriage broke down in 1750.
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