Early Georgian Portraits Catalogue: Charles

Prince Charles (1720-88)

Charles Edward Louis Philip Casimir Stuart, 'The Young Pretender', ‘Bonnie Prince Charlie'. Jacobite leader; eldest son of the titular James III, 'The Old Pretender', and grandson of James II; born and educated in Rome; attempted invasion foiled by the English fleet at Dunkirk, 1744; landed in the Hebrides, 1745, entered Edinburgh, was victorious at Prestonpans and reached Derby; retreated and crushed by Cumberland at Culloden, 1746; fugitive in the Highlands, escaped to France, expelled 1748; married Louisa von Stolberg, 1772; separated 1780; removed to Florence; died in Rome.

434 From the studio of Antonio David, c.1729(?)
Oil on canvas, 25 x 19 in. (635 x 482 mm); large dark brown eyes, thick lips, fresh complexion, own hair powdered white; [1] white neck-band, shirt with lace frill, scarlet jacket with a flower pattern edging down the front, deep cuffs embroidered with silver and blue lace, matching waistcoat, open to the waist; the Garter star and ribbon, underneath, the jewel of the Thistle partly visible on a green ribbon round his neck; plain grey back¬ground; lit from the left; in a plain brown painted oval. On the strength of its similarity to Largillière's picture of James and his sister, [2] NPG 434, when acquired, was attributed by Scharf to this artist. For various reasons, however, the portrait may be associated with David. The face mask relates to the younger whole length at Stonyhurst in which the Prince points to a coronet. Though attributed at times both to Gennari [3] and Nattier, [4] it is very near the engraving by N. Edelinck [5] lettered Davidde [pinx]. David was appointed one of 'His Majesty's painters' in 1718 [6] and for the twelve years following there are numerous references to him, including payments. A.E. Haswell Miller thinks it likely that he painted Charles every year or two, [7] and NPG 434 clearly belongs to such a series of portraits. The Stuart papers indicate that he delivered a portrait of the Prince wearing frocks to Sir William Ellis on 12 June 1723, and that in September he sent a bill for a picture 'at length of yr Maties and the Prince'. [8] The single portrait is missing. One sketched by Scharf, 26 April 1870, [9] is believed to represent Charles at the age of five. A similar oil was in the possession, 1955, of Dr R.B. Dollfus de Volckersberg, and a miniature after the type was at Cultoquhey, collection J. Maxtone Graham, 1911. This group is too early for our type. NPG 434 is, however, extremely close to two signed and dated Davids of 1732, in the Borghese-Aldobrandini family and the Scottish NPG (888), the latter showing different embroidery on the waistcoat. A rather stiffly painted variant of the Prince in armour is in the collection of the Comte Guy de Villefranche.

The Edelinck engraving can be dated from letters in the Stuart Papers stating it 'was done in Paris in the last months of 1726, from a painting begun at Rome and finished at Albano before June of the same year, and sent to Paris as a present long promised to Father Lewis Innes, Principal of the Scots College in Paris'. [10] The present full length there is not the portrait referred to. Miss Stuart-Wortley associates the type with a letter from James written on 16 November 1729: ‘I have had my children's pictures lately done, which are very like'. [11] She also mentions other copies noted in the Stuart Papers and possibly of the 1732 type by David. In NPG 434, though looking older than six, the sitter seems rather too young for twelve, and indeed younger than in the two portraits dated 1732.

Condition: some losses in the varnish, otherwise good.

Collections: bought, 1876, from Alexander Fletcher of Nottingham Place, Regent's Park, together with NPG 433 and 435 and, like them, said to have been bought from Cardinal York's secretary, Count Malatesta, to whom they had been bequeathed by the Cardinal.

1052 Attributed to Thomas Pingo, 1745(?)
Bronze medal, circular, 1 5/8 in. (41 mm) diameter

Obverse: Profile, head and neck only, to the right; hair falling to nape of neck; no drapery. Inscribed: CAROLUS WALLIAE PRINCEPS/ 1745. Reverse: Britannia standing on seashore, one hand on her shield, in the other a spear; ships on the left. Inscribed at top: AMOR ET SPES and at bottom, below a single rule, on plain background, BRITANNIA.

The obverse is identical with a 1750 medal, for which receipts survive, recording payment to Pingo for the striking of examples in gold, silver and copper [12] (a silver strike is in the Scottish NPG). Although the medal is inscribed 1745, a letter requesting permission for the striking of the medal and referring to Roettiers as the artist, was written at the end of March 1748. [13] Charles, it has been suggested, wished the medal to commemorate the '45; it was thus ante-dated for 'presentation to those who had helped him in his adventure'. [14] The face mask clearly relates to Lemoyne's plaster bust of Charles in the Scottish NPG (551), deriving from one made in 1746 [15] (see Iconography below).

Condition: a small damage on rim of the reverse at 9 o'clock.

Collections: presented 1896 by Lord Edmond Fitzmaurice.

Engraved: by Sir Robert Strange, 1749. [16]

2161 After Maurice Quentin De La Tour, 1748
Pastel on paper, 22 ½ x 16 5/8 in. (572 x 422 mm); brown eyes and eyebrows, wig powdered white and tied with black ribbon; steel cuirass and over it ribbons of the Garter and the Thistle, scarlet cloak lined with ermine.

La Tour exhibited a pastel of 'Le Prince Edouard' in the Paris salon of 1748 (80) [17] for which the Prince paid 1200 livres on 15 January 1750. The original, last heard of in Florence in 1785, [18] is now known through Aubert's engraving. Many copies were made and among paintings of the type, one was sold at Christie's, 13 April 1962, lot 128 as from the collection of Andrew Lumisden, the Prince's private secretary, and again 12 July 1963, lot 179. Another was at Sotheby's, 24 January 1962, lot 57. Pastels are in the Hamilton collection; at Townley Hall (near Drogheda), and a miniature lent by Denys Bower of Chiddingstone Castle was in the 'Royal Stuart' exhibition, Edinburgh, 1949 (not in catalogue). A pastel was at Christie's, 1957. All are head and shoulders.

Condition: very poor, with severe losses, fading and stains; the paper is now very brittle.

Collections: presented, 1927, by L.M. Fischel, who stated it had been in the possession of a Scottish Family in 1867.

Engraved: by M. Aubert, in the opposite direction, a rare type (reproduced Haswell Miller, p.24).

376 Attributed to Hugh Douglas Hamilton
Oil on canvas, 9 7/8 x 8 3/4 in. (248 x 219 mm); brown eyes, prominent curved nose, protruding lower lip, pale fleshy face, sagging muscles, grey wig with black ribbon, two rows of curls half covering his ears; white collar and shirt frill, russet coat and matching waistcoat, unbuttoned, Garter ribbon under coat; greyish-green background, lighter to the right; painted in an oval on a yellowish background.

A MS label removed from the stretcher in 1873, now in the picture dossier, reads: Carlos Eduardo Stuart/ Pompeo Batoni Pinxet = Fioio de Espolio de S.M.T. a Snra, D. Carlota/ Joaquina. One of three small portraits by the same hand, the others being of the sitter's wife, Louisa, Countess of Albany (q.v. NPG 377) and his brother Cardinal York (q.v. NPG 378). In considering the attribution of NPG 376, these must therefore also be taken into account. Scharf [19] attributed the portrait of Cardinal York to Rosalba to whom Charles sat, as indicated in the Stuart papers, when visiting Rome in 1737. There is, however, near-conclusive evidence that York is by Hamilton, while Rosalba's Charles, as lately discussed by F.J.B. Watson, [20] has now been identified as the pastel in a private collection in Rome. The appearance of the sitter in NPG 376 is far too late in life for 1737 and for Rosalba Carriera (1675-1757). An attribution to Pompeo Girolamo Batoni was accepted by Scharf [21] and NPG 376 so appeared up to the 1949 handlist. The Stuart Papers mentions this artist only as an unsatisfactory copyist of the portrait, c.1744, of Cardinal York holding a miniature of Charles by 'li due pitori Dupra'. [22] This date is again too early.

Further support for the attribution to Hamilton comes from the diary of Sir William Forbes, the banker. An entry dated Rome, 1792, mentions a recent visit to the house of Abbé Waters, major domo to Charlotte, Duchess of Albany, where he saw two small portraits of Charles Edward as an old man in a brown coat with Garter ribbon and of Henry Benedict done by 'Mr Hamilton'. [23] Hamilton was in Italy 1778-91; NPG 376 presumably dates from the last decade of Charles' life.

Versions of NPG 376 are in the Scottish NPG (622), in the collection of W.A. Baird of Lennoxlove, 1946, [24] and in the Dundee Art Gallery (47/12). A 30 x 25 in. version was lent to the 'Historical Portraits Exhibition', 1859 (63) by the Earl Fife, and there is another one at Townley Hall. A miniature of the same type painted on the lid of a snuff box is paired with a female sitter, said to be Charles' mother Maria Clementina Sobieska, but probably his wife Louisa, Countess of Albany. It was with Berry-Hill of New York in 1948.

Condition: pin holes at corners; discoloured varnish; restored 1889. Collections: purchased with NPG 377 (see above, Albany, Countess of) and NPG 378 (see below, York, Cardinal).

Exhibited: 'Royal Faces', Vancouver, 1968, and Birmingham, 1969 (27).

1929 Called Prince Charles Edward Stuart, by an unknown artist
Oil on canvas, 43 x 23 3/4 in. (1092 x 603 mm); own fair hair, brown eyes and eyebrows, youthful rounded face; Polish costume (or uniform) of black fur cap with aigrette, scarlet jacket with gold frogging, scarlet cape, open, lined with ermine; a green curtain, drawn back, reveals a column, right. Inscribed in white, top left: PRINCE CHARLES EDWARD LOUIS, and in a different hand, in yellow, on the column: PRINCE CHARLES EDWARD LOUIS./ GRANDSON OF KING JAMES the 2.nd/ BORN at ROME 31.st Dec.r 1720./ Died at Florence. 1788. [25] A letter in the Gallery archives from Miss Helen Farquhar gives the following transcription from a label on the back of the frame: 'This picture was once the property of Clementina Jacobina Sobieska Macdonald, a god-daughter of "James III", who eventually married Dr Schnell, tutor to the Duke of Cumberland's son, afterwards the blind King of Hanover, George V. A similar portrait only smaller was in the possession of Count Joseph Schonbrun . . . left by Mrs Schnell to Anne, Lady Cullum wife of Sir Thomas Gery Cullum, 8th . . . Bart of Hardwick . . . whom she had brought up'. [26] The likeness is not demonstrable and the identity has always been open to doubt. The features do not appear to be drawn from life and the only evidence is the reputed provenance and the Polish costume, his mother Maria Clementina Sobieska (q.v. NPG 1262) being the grand-daughter of John Sobieski, King of Poland.

Condition: discoloured varnish.

Collections: received, 1922; bequeathed, with other portraits, by G. Milner-Gibson-Cullum.


'The Prince', wrote James Edgar from Rome, 3 August 1737, to Thomas Tyrrell (agent in Florence), 'is in great joy on acct of his hair being cut off this afternoon and his putting on a Wig, I was present at the operation, and the Wig becomes him very well'. [27] In 1740, Sir Horace Mann noted: 'The young man is above the middle height and very thin. He wears a light bag wig; his face is rather long, the complexion clear, but borders on paleness; the forehead very broad, the eyes fairly large—blue but without sparkle; the mouth large, with the lips slightly curled, and the chin more sharp than rounded'. [28]

Literature: R.W. Cochran-Patrick, Catalogue of the Medals of Scotland, 1884; Robert Forbes, The Lyon in Mourning, ed. H. Paton (Scottish Historical Society XX–XXII), 1895-6; W.G. Blaikie Murdoch, 'Portraits of Prince Charles Edward Stuart', Connoisseur, XXIX, 1911; H. Farquhar, 'Some Portrait-Medals struck between 1745 and 1752 for Prince Charles Edward', British Numismatic Journal, XVII, 1923-4; A. Besnard, La Tour. La Vie et l'oeuvre de l'artiste, Paris, 1928; A.E. Haswell Miller, 'The Prince in Portraiture', SMT Magazine and Scottish Country Life, April 1946; F.J.B. Watson, 'Two Venetian Portraits of the Young Pretender: Rosalba Carriera and Francesco Guardi', Burlington Magazine, CXI, 1969.


1176 Bust by an unknown sculptor
Presented by William Aldis Wright, 1898.
Discovered to represent Gustavus Adolphus IV of Sweden; returned to donor.

1292 Painting by an unknown artist
Deposited on loan by the National Gallery, 1901; returned, 1912.


Portraits of the Stuart princeling as an armoured youth dedicated to reclaiming his grandfather's throne, crescendo to 1745. With defeat, although he lives in the memory of his still ardent followers, the shining image is not renewed. Later portraits reveal the face of a disillusioned ageing roué. To 1745 Just as his father, brought up outside Paris, first sat principally to French painters so Charles, born and bred in Rome, was painted by artists resident in or visiting Italy. As noted, in the first twelve years, the name most frequently encountered is that of Antonio David. Although one of the leading painters of distinguished visitors on the grand tour in the generation before Batoni, the work of this artist is relatively unexplored. A profile drawing to the right in the Ilchester collection, Holland House (222) by the English artist Giles Hussey (1710-88), in Rome 1730-7, is believed to have been taken in 1735. [29] Versions include one at Blair Castle and another, reversed with Garter, in Mrs Mockler's collection; derivatives in armour are in the collections of W.J. Perkins, [30] Stafford House, and Lord Arundell of Wardour. A drawing by Hussey in red chalk is in the British Museum.

A pastel from sittings to Rosalba in 1737 [31] (see NPG 376, above) formerly in the Gemäldegalerie, Alte Meister, Dresden, is now owned by Dr J.B. Hartmann, and an oil after the type, also previously at Dresden and wrongly named Cardinal York when reproduced by Vittorio Malamani, [32] is attributed by F.J.B. Watson to Francesco Guardi. The portrait is now in the collection of Mr and Mrs Paul Wallraf, London, and as Watson points out, since the sitter is shown with the Garter, he must be Charles. An engraving without the Garter after a portrait by Rosalba, published by J. Canale, 1767, is lettered Portrait d'un Sign. Anglois. It may well represent another sitter. Other sittings in 1737 resulted in the portrait by Liotard which the Prince's father James preferred to Rosalba's [33] but unfortunately, considering this artist's revealing account of the English royal family (Millar, 578-90), this is now missing.

A portrait commissioned by James in 1737 for the Duchess of Parma produced the outstanding work by Louis Gabriel Blanchet, pair with the sitter's brother Cardinal York. The portrait is said to have been painted following Charles' visit to his great-aunt, the Duchess, in 1728, but she later speaks of a portrait of 1738 with payments noted for November and December 1737, and February, April 1738. [34] Signed and dated 1738, it is in the collection of Mrs Colin Davy [Editorial note, 2012: acquired by the National Portrait Gallery in 1982]. A fine three-quarter length version, signed and dated 1739, one of a set of the two brothers and their parents from the Hay collection at Duns [35] is now in the Royal Collection, Holyrood House. The Prince looks younger than eighteen and the painting may owe something to earlier portraits such as those by David of 1732. Variants of the Blanchet type are at Gosford House and, less close, at Ingatestone Hall. Miniatures of the two brothers are in the collections of Colonel A.J.E. Cranstoun and the Duke of Buccleuch. A full face oil, Scottish NPG (1836), pair with Clementina, may also be connected with Blanchet.

A double miniature inscribed Charles Edward Stuart, Prince of Wales and his brother who was afterwards Cardinal York. Painted at Rome in the year 1739 by Giacomo Galletti, with Sabin Galleries, 1966, was formerly in the collection of Horace Walpole. A painting in the Duke of Alba's collection (73) is stated to be of 1742 and by J.J. Parrocel, an artist of whom little is known. Charles was also painted by Domenico Duprà, a portrait being engraved by N.J.B. de Poilly in 1746 as after him and taken in Rome. An oil of the same design at Keir is inscribed on the back Domco Dupra fece Rom. [36] Head and shoulder copies, mostly rather crude, were in the collection of B. Ficklin, Tasburgh Hall, Norwich, 1938, [37] at Sotheby's, 26 July 1967, lot 2, and with the Holbein Galleries, 1967. A three-quarter length was at Christie's, 31 July 1953, lot 75, the face mask similar to the engraving by J. Daulé (O'D 21). Although the earliest date at present available is 1746 it would seem more probable that these portraits precede the '45, perhaps by several years. A finer engraving, head and shoulders only, facing right, was made by G.E. Petit after an original picture by Duprà belonging to 'Mr. d'Obryen', James's Paris agent; a rather similar, but not necessarily related head belonging to Dr Macdonald of Taunton was engraved by 1820 as after a painting by Alexander at Rome.

Portraits noted by Miss Stuart-Wortley when the Prince was in Scotland in 1745, [38] are a miniature, now at Blair Castle, stated to have been done at the breakfast table by Sir Robert Strange, 1 September 1745, [39] and another by an unknown artist 'a pretty large miniature of the Prince taken of him when he was at Edinburgh', shown, apparently, to Father Alexander Lesley at Leghorn by Mr Hoop on his way to Naples. [40] The existence of a third portrait is deduced from a captured note among the Cumberland papers written, 26 October 1745 (old style), by Colonel Roy Stuart asking Allan Ramsay to come to Holyrood to take 'his Royal Highness picture'. [41] Nothing more is known of this portrait. A strong likeness is supposed to have existed between the painter Arthur Devis and the sitter but the highly coloured story of mistaken identity when the former was nearly arrested and executed by soldiers in Derby in 1746 has not been substantiated. The principal evidence for this similarity of features rests on the inscriptions below the pair of miniatures now in the Harris Museum and Art Gallery, Preston. [42]

A group of portraits relates to the well-known engraving by Sir Robert Strange, 1745, with the motto Everso missus succurrere sæclo. [43] An interesting head and shoulders of the type is at Gosford; a miniature, oil on copper, was at Christie's, 7 June 1966, lot 42, afterwards with N. Woolf, London. Similar to the Strange face mask is J. Williams' mezzotint of the Prince dressed as a woman after Culloden (CS 1). An engaging, if rather primitive group of small whole lengths known as the 'Harlequin' type shows the Prince in highland dress. Examples are in Lord Lovat's collection and at Brook. A three-quarter length formerly in the collection of Colonel Gordon Campbell of Glenlyon is now at Dalmeny. The type, presumably evolved at the time of the '45, may relate to the Strange engraving. There is a similar engraving by G. Will after Wassdail.

After Culloden and Charles' escape to France, a portrait was taken by La Tour (see NPG 2161, above) and on 20 January 1748 a payment was made to L. Tocqué for another not mentioned again [44] but known from engravings by J.G. Wille and F. Basan (O'D 16, 17). Various copies after Tocqué include one in the possession of G.B. Lowe, Bexhill-on-Sea, 1936, and a miniature at Alloa House. The Stuart Papers record a marble bust by Lemoyne (Jean Baptiste Lemoyne II, 1704-78) expected in October 1747 but not finished until 1750. [45] The terracotta was exhibited at the salon of 1747. The Prince, writing from exile in Ghent to the son of his Paris banker in 1752, mentions his 'Marble Bousto' by Le Moyne and requests that it and his portrait by La Tour be taken care of. [46] A plaster head in Edinburgh, Scottish NPG 594, incised on the plinth Charles Edouard Stuart, par J. B. LeMoyne, 1746 is likely to be a 19th-century cast. [47]

After 1745
In 1748 Charles was banished from France and, after various travels, settled again in Rome in 1766. In 1767 Andrew Lumisden writes that no portrait had been done for many years [48] but towards the end of his life Charles, by then far from handsome, was drawn in Rome, together with his wife, c.1772, by Ozias Humphry. Miniatures are in the collections of the Marquess of Exeter, the Duke of Atholl, and another, lettered on the back Rome 1783, was at Christie's, 25 June 1954, lot 64. A pencil sketch by Humphry [49] at Keir, inscribed prince Charles Stewart drawn from Nature at Florence 1776, was in the 'Royal Stuart Exhibition', Edinburgh, 1949 (83). Like NPG 376, it shows a markedly dispirited appearance. The last large painting is probably the portrait by Laurent Pécheux at Stanford Park, Rugby, signed and dated 1770, bought at Cardinal York's sale in Rome. There are bills from Pécheux in June 1770 and in March the following year he was appointed one of Charles's painters. [50]

For the baptismal group by P.L. Ghezzi, see James, 'The Old Pretender', below.


1. cf. Appearance above.
2. NPG 976, see below James, 'The Old Pretender'.
3. A. Lang, Charles Francis Edward, 1900, opposite p.12; Blaikie Murdoch, p.154.
4. In Stonyhurst catalogue, 1932.
5. In a later state, the sitter given a Scots bonnet.
6. S-W, I, p.3.
7. NPG archives.
8. S-W, I, p.6.
9. NPG archives.
10. S-W, I, p.9.
11. Ibid, p.34.
12. Farquhar, pp.587-8.
13. Stuart Papers, Windsor, vol.290, letter 65.
14. Farquhar, p.179.
15. S-W, IV, pp.6, 12-13.
16. Reproduced H. Farquhar, opposite p.183, from the engraving in the British Museum, used to head a contemporary broadsheet eulogising Charles.
17. Besnard, p.43.
18. S-W, IV, p.4.
19. Scharf, p.491.
20. Watson, p.333.
21. Scharf, p.100.
22. S-W, II, p.27; III, pp.2-5, citing Charles to James Edgar, 25 May 1744.
23. Information B. Skinner, 5 May 1957.
24. Reproduced Haswell Miller, p.24.
25. Actually at Rome.
26. Letter dated 1 April 1922(?) from Helen Farquhar to J.D. Milner, director of the NPG 1916-27.
27. S-W, II, p.6.
28. DNB, IV, p.108, when the Prince was passing through Florence on his way to France.
29. Earl of Ilchester, Catalogue of Pictures belonging to the Earl of Ilchester at Holland House, 1904; a copy at Sotheby's, 15 May 1946, lot 8, is so inscribed.
30. Reproduced SMT Magazine and Scottish Country Life, April 1946, p.16.
31. Watson, pp.333-6.
32. Rosalba Carriera, Bergamo, 1910, opposite p.76.
33. S-W, II, pp.7-14.
34. S-W, I, p.29 and S-W, II, p.26; exh. 'Italian Art and Great Britain', RA, 1960 (144).
35. See below, Maria Clementina Sobieska, NPG 1262.
36. S-W, II, p.28, and S-W, III, p.11.
37. Reproduced, Connoisseur, XXXIV, 1912, frontispiece.
38. S-W, III, pp.24-5.
39. Forbes, I, pp.208-10, confirms his presence at Blair on that day.
40. S-W, III, p.24.
41. Ibid, p.25.
42. S.H. Pavière, The Devis Family of Painters, 1950, pp.28-9, pl.16.
43. A phrase derived from Virgil, Georgics, I, 500-1: 'Hunc saltem everso iuvenem succurrere saeclo ne prohibete' ('At least stay not this youth from repairing the ruined age'), also used by Owen McSwiny on an engraving, Apotheosis of William III, see Tancred Borenius, 'A Venetian Apotheosis of William III', Burlington Magazine, LXIX, 1936, p.245.
44. S-W, IV, p.1.
45. Ibid, p.6.
46. Haswell Miller, p.24.
47. J.L. Caw, Scottish Portraits, 1903, II, p.19. R.E. Hutchison, verbally, 1972.
48. S-W, VI, p.1.
49. cf. Blaikie Murdoch, reproduced p.158, there stated to be in the Scottish NPG.
50. S-W, VI, p.1.