Queen Elizabeth II
1 portrait on display in Room 32 at the National Portrait Gallery
Queen Elizabeth II
by Cecil Beaton
bromide print, 2 June 1953
18 1/8 in. x 15 1/8 in. (460 mm x 383 mm) sight
Given by Mr Ford Hill and the American Friends of the National Portrait Gallery (London) Foundation, Inc., 2015
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Sittersback to top
- Lady Moyra Kathleen Campbell-Grove (née Hamilton) (1930-), Wife of Peter Colin Drummond Campbell-Grove; daughter of 4th Duke of Abercorn. Sitter in 5 portraits.
- Queen Elizabeth II (1926-), Queen regnant. Sitter associated with 919 portraits.
- Anne Veronica (née Coke), Baroness Glenconner (1932-), President of charitable organisations; Extra Lady-in-Waiting to Princess Margaret; wife of 3rd Baron Glenconner; daughter of 5th Earl of Leicester. Sitter in 14 portraits.
- Jane Antonia Frances (née Vane-Tempest-Stewart), Lady Rayne (later Lacey) (1932-), Former wife of Max Rayne, Baron Rayne, and later wife of Robert Lacey; daughter of 8th Marquess of Londonderry. Sitter in 3 portraits.
Artistback to top
- Cecil Beaton (1904-1980), Photographer, designer and writer. Artist associated with 1088 portraits, Sitter associated with 354 portraits.
This portraitback to top
Beaton was commissioned to take the official photographs of the Coronation, due in great part to the support of the Queen Mother, whom he had first photographed in 1939. Queen Elizabeth chose six Maids of Honour for her Coronation ceremony, following a precedent set by Queen Victoria. For this photograph Beaton placed the Maids of Honour in the order they had stood in Westminster Abbey. To the left can be seen a portrait of Richard Colley Wellesley, Marquess Wellesley (1760-1842) by Sir Martin Archer Shee (1769-1850).
The Maids of Honour were Lady Mary Baillie-Hamilton (now Lady Mary Russell), Lady Vane-Tempest-Stewart (now The Lady Rayne), Lady Jane Heathcote-Drummond-Willoughby (now The Baroness Willoughby de Eresby), Lady Anne Coke (now The Lady Glenconner), Lady Rosemary-Spencer-Churchill (now Lady Rosemary Muir) and Lady Moyra Hamilton (now Lady Moyra Campbell).
Placesback to top
- Place made and portrayed: United Kingdom: England, London (Green Drawing Room, Buckingham Palace, London)
Portrait setback to top
Subjects & Themesback to top
Events of 1953back to top
Current affairsA combination of low pressure in the North Sea, hurricane force winds, and high tides result in the Great Flood of 1953. With no warning system many were trapped in their homes as 20-foot waves crashed on the coast; hundreds were killed at sea and on the east coast.John Hunt's British Expedition conquers Everest. News of the achievement reached Britain on the day of Elizabeth's coronation.
Art and scienceFrances Crick and James Watson discover the double helix structure of DNA. Uncovering DNA's chemical make-up revolutionised our understanding of the building blocks of life.Ian Fleming publishes his first James Bond novel, Casino Royal.Chad Varah founds 'The Samaritans' helpline.
InternationalJoseph Stalin dies four days after suffering a stroke. It has been suggested that Stalin was assassinated, as he was denied medical assistance for over a day after he was found; many suspect that he was poisoned. On his death Georgy Malenkov became leader of the Soviet Union.
Exhibitions and displays
- A Century of Photography, 1840-1940
Until 1 October
- Yousuf Karsh
- The Face of Monarchy
- The Queen's Golden Jubilee
- Terry O'Neill: Celebrity
- Kings and Queens: A Family tree
- Cecil Beaton Portraits
- The Royal Ballet at 75
- Cecil Beaton Drawings
- Handlist of names in the Reference Collection
- Photographic holdings - print and negative collections
- Learn more
- In Close Up: Laurence Olivier
- Portrait of the Day: William John Christopher Vassall
6 April, 12:30