Historical Portraits Picture Archive

Portrait miniature of King Charles I (1600-49) 

 English School 17th Century 

Portrait miniature of King Charles I (1600-49),  English School 17th Century
Oil on copper
17th Century
Oval, 3 3/8 in (82 mm) high
Large miniature of a man: 7,5 x 6 cm A miniature of a lady: 6,8 x 5,2 cm A small miniature of a man: 6 x 4 cm A portrait miniature of King Charles I (Stuart) of England Scotland and Ireland (1600-1649) and two other portrait miniatures on copper, 17th/18th ct. Minor damages due to age.
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This portrait miniature of Charles I, possibly based on the popular etching by Wenceslaus Hollar (1607-1677), was one of many painted after his execution in 1649. It can be difficult to date commemorative works such as this with any precision, as so many were produced both in the aftermath of the execution and during the restoration of his son Charles II.

This particular portrait of him is extremely close both in size and type to another example in the National Portrait Gallery, London (NPG 6357), which was intended as the base for mica overlays. These overlays were used for entertainment, much like a modern day card ‘dressing up doll’, and usually told the story of the King’s reign, trial and death. The mica ‘talcs’ were transparent films which could be placed over the oil portrait to ‘dress up’ the figure in different guises.
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