About this lot


Portrait of John Curzon of Kedleston (1598-1686) when a child, standing full length, in red, holding a black hat oil on canvas 121 x 89.5cm

Footnote: Provenance: By descent from the sitter, To Assheton Curzon, younger son of Sir Nathaniel, 4th Bt., who was created Baron Curzon of Penn, Viscount Curzon of Penn, grandfather of Richard, 1st Earl Howe, Thence by descent in the Howe collection at Penn House, Buckinghamshire, until sold in the 1940s; With Ben Elwes Fine Art, London, July 2007, Private collection, Kensington, London The sitter who was the elder son of John Curzon of Kedleston by Millicent, daughter of Sir Ralph Sacheverell of Stanton, became MP for Brackley in 1628-9 and for the county of Derby from 1640-1648, for which he had also been High Sheriff from 1637-38. He was created a Baronet of Scotland in 1636 and of England in 1641 and married Patience Crewe of Steane, sister of the 1st Baron Crewe. They had one surviving son and two surviving daughters. Sir John died at the enormous age of 88, having lived through the reigns of the last Tudor and four Stuart monarchs, as well as through Cromwell's republican Commonwealth. The present painting closely resembles a 'Portrait of an Unknown Boy' by Robert Peake, sold at Christie's, The Rufford Abbey Sale, on 18th November 1938, lot 46 (see Sir Roy Strong, The English Icon, 1969, p. 241, no. 212).

Condition report: Oil on canvas which has been lined. There are undulations in the canvas at the upper right corner. The paint layer is stable. There are areas of wear and abrasion which would be expected of a painting of this date – notably in the sitter’s hair. There are areas of overpaint across the surface, applied fairly liberally, but the appearance is acceptable from a normal viewing distance. The varnish is glossy and even but brittle with scuffs across the surface. There is mould forming along cracks in localised areas. The frame is in a good condition.

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