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Painting Title A Man with the Order of the Garter, possibly Charles Lennox, 1st Duke of Richmond (1672–1723)
Alternative Title Unknown Man with the Order of the Garter
Collection York Art Gallery
Artist Manner ofDahl, Michael (Swedish painter, born 1656 or 1659, died 1743, active in England)
Date Earliest possibly about 1693
Date Latest possibly about 1697
Description

A half-length portrait of a bewigged man looking slightly left, wearing a blue ribbon and the Order of the Garter. In the background there is probably a piece of landscape, barely visible because of the painting's condition. Judging from the way the man is dressed, the portrait was probably created around 1700; it is a pair with YORAG : 601 depicting a lady. Both portraits were said to have come from the 2nd Duke of Buckingham's house in York. The sitter seesms to be possible to identify as Charles Lennox, 1st Duke of Richmond, 1st Duke of Lennox, 1st Duke of Aubigny (1672–1723), which is based on comparison to the later portrait of the Duke, painted by Godfrey Kneller ca. 1703-10 (National Portrait Gallery), depicting a man of almost the same facial features, although slightly older and of a bigger weight. In such case the pendant portrait of a Lady would be sitter's wife, Anne née Brudenell (1671-1722), whom he married in January 1693. Earlier in 1681 Charles Lennox was invested as a Knight of the Garter and in 1683 he became high steward of the city of York. Most likely the portrairs were painted between the couple's wedding in 1693 and 1697 when they moved to Goodwood estate.

The portraits may be described as in style of Michael Dahl. Dahl was the leading portrait painter in England after Sir Godfrey Kneller, in whose studio he briefly worked, although it is often considered now that Dahl was an artist of greater refinement than Kneller. Dahl's style became popular in English portraiture around 1700. It is very probable that both portraits are copies or replicas, as their artistic quality is not very high, and the sitters obviously belong to the elite, who were usually portrayed by the best artists. Nevertheless, at this point the painting's condition does not allow to come to a final conclusion about its attribution.

Current Accession Number YORAG : 600
Subject portrait ( possibly Charles Lennox, 1st Duke of Richmond)
Measurements 118.1 x 99.1 cm
Material oil on canvas
Acquisition Details Given by Dr. Petch, 1919.
Publications listed as 'Unknown man with the Order of the Garter' by unknown artist: York Art Gallery Catalogue - Catalogue of Paintings vol. III: English and European 19th and 20th centuries, The Reserve Collection, City of York Art Gallery, York, 1974, p. 115; Oil Paintings in Public Ownership. North Yorkshire, London 2006, p. 342.
Notes According to the tradition, YORAG : 600 and 601 were supposed to come from Buckingham House, originally Fairfax House, in the Bishophill area of York. It belonged to George Villiers, 2nd Duke of Buckingham (1628-1687), who died without issue. His wife, Mary Fairfax, died in 1704. By the 1730s the house was already ruined, in possession of Thomas Fairfax of Newton, and later was demolished.
Rights Owner York Museums Trust (York Art Gallery)
Author Dr Magdalena Łanuszka
 

 

 

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