Sir Francis Walsingham
Sir Francis Walsingham
attributed to John De Critz the Elder
oil on panel, circa 1585
30 in. x 25 in. (762 mm x 635 mm)
Click on the links below to find out more:
Sitterback to top
- Sir Francis Walsingham (circa 1532-1590), Statesman. Sitter associated with 30 portraits.
This portraitback to top
This is the only known portrait type of Walsingham, and is associated with the artist John de Critz whom he patronised extensively in the 1580s. Despite mounting debts, Walsingham repeatedly entertained Elizabeth I at his home at Barn Elms, near Putney, in the second half of the 1580s, the period from which this portrait dates. It shows Walsingham wearing a cameo of the queen who he served so faithfully and yet who failed to reward him for his loyalty and patriotism.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Audio Guide
- Bolland, Charlotte; Cooper, Tarnya, The Real Tudors: Kings and Queens Rediscovered, 2014 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 12th September 2014 to 1st March 2015), p. 128
- Charles Nicholl, Shakespeare and his Contemporaries, 2015, p. 49
- Cooper, John, A Guide to the National Portrait Gallery, 2009, p. 12
- Nicholl, Charles, Character Sketches: Elizabethan Writers, 1997, p. 18
- Nicholl, Charles, Insights: Shakespeare and His Contemporaries, 2005, p. 41
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 640
- Strong, Roy, Tudor and Jacobean Portraits, 1969, p. 321
Events of 1585back to top
Current affairsAnglo-Dutch treaty of alliance against Spain is signed at Nonsuch Palace.Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester arrives in the Netherlands with 7,000 soldiers to fight for the Dutch Protestant cause and is appointed Governor-General of the Netherlands.An expedition, funded by Sir Walter Ralegh and led by his cousin, Sir Richard Grenville, establishes an ill-fated colony on Roanoke Island. The area is named Virginia after Queen Elizabeth I.
Art and scienceMiniature of Sir Walter Ralegh is painted by Nicholas Hilliard at about this time.The publisher Robert Waldegrave is imprisoned for printing Puritan books. The explorer John Davis discovers the strait named after him between Greenland and Canada while searching for the Northwest Passage to the Far East.
InternationalHenry III of France bows to pressure from the militant Catholic Henry, Duke of Guise to sign the Treaty of Nemours, which revokes all toleration of Huguenots. Opposition to the legal heir to the crown, the Protestant Henry of Navarre provokes the final French War of Religion. Sack of Antwerp by Alessandro Farnese, Duke of Parma, the Hapsburg Governor of the Netherlands. The city's pre-eminence as a centre of international commerce is lost to Amsterdam.
See this portrait
On display in Room 2 at the National Portrait Gallery