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King Charles I (1600-1649) in gilt studded armor


Artist: Peter Oliver

silver locket frame with turquoise enamel reverse, glazed with rock crystal engraved with laurel border
Provenance: Sotheby's, London, 4 July 1989, lot 263 (as Richard Sackville, 3rd Earl of Dorset)
Collection of the late T.S. Eliot; Christie's, London, 20th November, lot 92, as King Charles I

The present miniature appears to be a smaller version of a head and shoulders portrait of King Charles I when Prince of Wales by Peter Oliver in the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, Bedford. The traditional identification of the sitter as Richard Sackville, 3rd Earl of Dorset cannot be substantiated on the basis of comparison with the one in the Cecil Higgins Collection, the iconography of the 3rd Earl of Dorset and the presence of the blue sash of the Order of the Garter worn by the sitter.
Peter was even more eminent in miniature painting than his father, Isaac. He began painting miniature portraits of Charles, wearing the Garter ribbon, from circa 1612 through to the late 1620s, after which John Hoskins took on the role of official image provider. Peter Oliver quickly established himself in court circles, in particular with Charles I, both when he was Prince of Wales and after his accession as King in 1625. There were also close links with Charles I's sister, Elizabeth of Bohemia.
More Information
Year                 circa 1620
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