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Sir Walter Ralegh (Raleigh); Walter Ralegh

1 of 7 portraits on display in the Long Gallery at Montacute House

Sir Walter Ralegh (Raleigh); Walter Ralegh, by Unknown artist, 1602 - NPG 3914 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Sir Walter Ralegh (Raleigh); Walter Ralegh

by Unknown artist
oil on canvas, 1602
78 1/2 in. x 50 1/8 in. (1994 mm x 1273 mm)
Given by Lennard family, 1954
Primary Collection
NPG 3914


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Sittersback to top

  • Sir Walter Ralegh (1554-1618), Soldier, sailor, poet and writer. Sitter in 48 portraits.
  • Walter Ralegh (1593-1618), Eldest son of Sir Walter Ralegh. Sitter in 1 portrait.

Artistback to top

This portraitback to top

This portrait was painted in 1602 when Ralegh was at the height of his renewed favour with the queen. It shows him together with his son Walter (1593-1618) who is made to mimic his father's confident pose. Both father and son are dressed in splendid costumes; Ralegh's jacket is embroidered with seed pearls and his son's blue suit is silver-braided. A contemporary of Ralegh described him as 'framed in so just a proportion and so seemly an order, as there was nothing in him that a man might well wish to have been added or altered'. The family home was at nearby Sherborne Castle in Dorset.

Linked publicationsback to top

Events of 1602back to top

Current affairs

The Lord Deputy of Ireland Charles Blount, Lord Mountjoy secures the surrender of the Spanish force sent to Ireland to assist the Catholic rebellion led by Hugh O'Neill, Earl of Tyrone.

Art and science

The full-length portrait of Sir Walter Ralegh and his son is painted by an unknown artist. The Bodleian Library of Oxford University is inaugurated by the scholar and diplomat Sir Thomas Bodley. Akbar, Mughal Emperor of India, constructs the Buland Darwaza ('Great Gateway') in Fatehpur Sikri, India, to commemorate his conquest of Gujarat.

International

Foundation of the Dutch East India Company (Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie or VOC) and the Amsterdam Stock Exchange. The Dutch fleet arrives in Ceylon (present-day Sri Lanka) and is welcomed as aid against the Portuguese. Abbas I, Shah of Persia expels the Portuguese from Bahrain in the Persian Gulf and launches a campaign against the Ottoman Empire.

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