Miniature

A small and detailed piece of art, usually a portrait, executed in gouache or watercolour. Sixteenth century miniatures were usually painted in body colour on playing cards or on vellum. In the seventeenth century portrait miniatures were sometimes painted in oil on a metal surface. In the eighteenth century the character was changed by the introduction of ivory as a ground, often painted in transparent watercolour.

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Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex, attributed to Hans Holbein the Younger, circa 1532-1533 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex
attributed to Hans Holbein the Younger
circa 1532-1533
NPG 6310

Queen Elizabeth I, by Nicholas Hilliard, 1572 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Queen Elizabeth I
by Nicholas Hilliard
1572
NPG 108

Peter Oliver, by Peter Oliver, circa 1625-1630 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Peter Oliver
by Peter Oliver
circa 1625-1630
NPG 4853

Oliver Cromwell, by Samuel Cooper, 1649 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Oliver Cromwell
by Samuel Cooper
1649
NPG 5589

Brook Taylor, probably by Louis Goupy, 1720 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Brook Taylor
probably by Louis Goupy
1720
NPG 1920

Richard Cosway, by Richard Cosway, circa 1790 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Richard Cosway
by Richard Cosway
circa 1790
NPG 304

Mary Anne Clarke (née Thompson), by Adam Buck, 1803 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Mary Anne Clarke (née Thompson)
by Adam Buck
1803
NPG 2793

James Lonsdale, by James Lonsdale, circa 1810 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

James Lonsdale
by James Lonsdale
circa 1810
NPG 1854

Sir Francis Burdett, 5th Bt, by Sir William Charles Ross, circa 1840 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Sir Francis Burdett, 5th Bt
by Sir William Charles Ross
circa 1840
NPG 2056

Angela Georgina Burdett-Coutts, Baroness Burdett-Coutts, by Sir William Charles Ross, circa 1847 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Angela Georgina Burdett-Coutts, Baroness Burdett-Coutts
by Sir William Charles Ross
circa 1847
NPG 2057

Emilia Francis (née Strong), Lady Dilke, by Charles Camino, 1882 - NPG  - © National Portrait Gallery, London

Emilia Francis (née Strong), Lady Dilke
by Charles Camino
1882
NPG 1828

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