European Decor & Design Online
School of Godfrey Kneller (British, 1646-1723)
Portrait of a Lady, Possibly Lady Godolphin
Unsigned, attributed to "...G. Kneller" and with the sitter identified indistinctly in an inscription in a later hand on the stretcher.
Oil on canvas, 21 1/2 x 16 3/8 in. (54.5 x 41.5 cm), framed.
Condition: Lined, retouch, craquelure, minor surface grime.
N.B. The stretcher of the work at hand is further inscribed, "he [Kneller] painted 12 Court Beauties & 2 were stolen." This inscription would appear to link the undocumented portrait at hand to the Beauties at Hampton Court by Kneller. The Hampton Court Beauties, as the series is sometimes known, were commissioned by Mary II in emulation of Lely's Windsor Beauties painted a generation earlier. They were full-length portraits of the principal ladies attending upon the Queen or frequently in her retinue. Kneller commenced the series with a portrait of the Duchess of Grafton in January, 1690. Eight of the set were completed by the end of the following year and are still in the Royal Collection. The series was engraved by John Farber Jr., as The Beauties, a set of twelve in mezzotint. In addition to those pictures in the Royal Collection, he included additional plates of the Duchesses of Manchester and Marlborough, the Countess of Clarendon, and Queen Mary.
Framed dimensions are 30 3/4 x 25 x 2 inches, including the corner ornaments and crest.
Items may have wear and tear, imperfections, or the effects of aging. Any condition statement given, as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Skinner shall have no responsibility for any error or omission.