The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

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Gallery history

The timeline below will take you through the National Portrait Gallery's history, from how it came to be in existence to the present day.

To use, click the arrows on either side of the slides to go through each slide individually, or use the bottom timeline to scroll through to locate specific dates.

All images featured in the Gallery History Timeline are © National Portrait Gallery, London unless otherwise stated

The National Portrait Gallery: An Architectural History
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