Historical Portraits Picture Archive

Portrait of Jane Roberts, Duchess of St Albans (d.1778) 1768

Nathaniel Hone the Elder (17181784)

Portrait of Jane Roberts, Duchess of St Albans (d.1778), Nathaniel Hone the Elder
Oil on unlined canvas
18th Century
30x25in 76.2 x 63.5cm
The Duke of St Albans His sale Sothebys 21.12.1982
This remarkable painting, in such fresh condition, demonstrates the particular qualities that ensured Hone's swift rise as a fashionable portraitist in London. The innovative pose is a subtle reminder of the stock, outmoded forms employed by so many of his contemporaries, whilst the delicate, almost trompe-l''oeuil treatment with which he paints the sitter's jewellery reminds us of Hone's origins as an enamellist. As so often in his portraits, the sitter''s stylised, dark almond eyes hint at an intelligent archness.

Jane Roberts, daughter and heiress to Sir Walter Roberts Bart., married George Beauclerk, third Duke of St Albans, on October 23rd 1752 at St George''s, Hanover Square in London. In addition to her beauty she brought her husband a dowry of 125,000. Sadly the Duchess died in 1778 without producing an heir and the Duke, who died some years later in 1786, was succeeded by a cousin.
Philip Mould Ltd, 18-19 Pall Mall, London, SW1Y 5LU.Copyright Philip Mould Ltd.