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
Lent by Gift of Mr Ford Hill, American Friends of the National Portrait Gallery (London) Foundation, Inc., 2011
Primary Collection
NPG P1454

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  • Cecil Beaton (1904-1980), Photographer, designer and writer. Artist associated with 1087 portraits, Sitter associated with 350 portraits.

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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).