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  • Portrait of Edward VI

    Artist:
    Anonymous Artist, mid-16th century
    Technique:
    oil
    Dimensions:
    50,5x35,6 cm

Anonymous Artist, mid-16th century

Portrait of Edward VI

Great Britain, Between 1747 and 1550

Edward VI (1537-1553), son of Henry VIII and his third wife Jane Seymour, became King of England in 1547. Mounting the throne at just 10 years old, he reigned a mere 6 years, but the young king nonetheless left his mark in history as a "good" monarch, who revealed all the instincts of a talented politician and ruler. In this full-length portrait, Edward stands richly attired against a background of Renaissance architecture. Beneath the knee of his left leg is the symbol of the highest Order of the Garter, of which the king was elected a member only nine days after mounting the throne on 6 February 1547. In this work by an unknown master we feel the influence of the great German artist Hans Holbein, who spent many years working in England and in many ways determined the nature of English 16th-century portraiture. However, while Holbein depicted his sitters to bring out their unique physical and spiritual characteristics, his followers went on to create more generalized portrait types. From Holbein they borrowed the composition and some elements of the style, in particular the flat, decorative approach and careful depiction of details. Such small portraits, which were usually based on official portraits hanging in royal residences, could be used as a gift or to adorn a portrait gallery in noble castles. In the later case, they were perceived as a manifestation of loyalty to the ruling dynasty. This is a rare example of a full-length portrait of Edward VI.

Title:

Portrait of Edward VI

Place:

Material:

Technique:

oil

Dimensions:

50,5x35,6 cm

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage in 1779; acquired from the R. Walpole collection, Houghton Hall, England

Inventory Number:

ГЭ-1260

Category:

Collection:

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