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Later Stuart Portraits Catalogue

John Dryden (1631-1700), Dramatist and Poet Laureate

c.1664
Unattributed painting, half-length oval, own long hair, wide lace cravat. Bodleian Library, presented by George Clarke 1732 (E. Malone, Prose Works of John Dryden, I, 1800, p 432; Mrs R. L. Poole, Catalogue of Portraits in the possession of the University, Colleges, City and County of Oxford, I, p 71, no.177; Catalogue of Portraits in the Bodleian Library by Mrs R. L. Poole completely revised and expanded by K. Garlick, 2004, p 109, noting ‘attributed by some to J. M. Wright’). Exhibited Second Special Exhibition of National Portraits ( ... William and Mary to MDCCC), South Kensington, 1867, no.64. Version in the Strawberry Hill sale, 21st day, 18 May 1842, lot 67 as Kneller. The identification traditional. A watercolour copy by G. P. Harding ‘From the original at Strawberry Hill’ acquired by P. C. Dryden Mundy in 1936; another, inscribed ‘from a picture in the possession of Dr Barrett’, sold Sotheby’s, Beresford Adams, Chester, 31 July 1981, lot 71; and a third[?] sold Christie’s South Kensington, 18 July 1983, lot 179 (shared lot).

c.1668
Painting by J. M. Wright, half-length, with long wig, open shirt and dark coat, within a painted sculpted oval decorated with oak leaves and quotations from Virgil, Horace, Martial, Juvenal, Ovid and Statius, with a central motto Par omnibus Vnus (‘a [poet] to match them all’), apparently a celebration of Dryden’s appointment as Poet Laureate in 1668; an old inventory number 32 bottom left. Christie’s South Kensington, 4 July 2007, lot 111 as from the circle of Greenhill, withdrawn; Christie’s, 25 April 2008, lot 83 as by J. M. Wright; previously sold Christie’s, 17 July 1908, lot 125 from H. M. Weston of West Horsley Place.

1683
Painting by John Riley, three-quarter-length seated, left hand at breast, right hand on an upright virgil. Traquair (D. T. Piper, Burlington Magazine, CIII, 1961, pp 105-06, fig.26). Exhibited Age of Charles II, RA, 1960, no.152. Engraved, bust-length without hands, P. Van Gunst as Iohn Ryly Pinxit, inscribed Anno 1683. Aetat:52. (front. to Dryden’s Virgil 1709). This, or a version, belonged to William Davenport Bromley of Baginton Hall, Warw., in 1800 (E. Malone, Prose Works of John Dryden, I, 1800, p 432); another was in the Bessborough sale, 6 February 1801, lot 31 (‘Riley, a Head of John Dryden’ [91.5 x 76.2 cm]). The volume of Virgil he holds is evidently not the prestigious translation which Tonson published in 1697.
Half-length versions include those in the Sterling Library, London University, from Chesterfield House (Halifax sale, 2nd day, 7 March 1740, lot 38, described by G. Vertue, Notebooks, Wal. Soc., XXIV, 1936, p 165, as ‘a Coppy. a wigg on’, bought Chesterfield; D. Piper, ‘The Chesterfield House Literary Portraits’, in R. Wellek & A. Ribeiro eds., Essays in Memory of James Marshall Osborn, 1979, p 190, no.9), and ‘an Original Picture in the Collection of Sir Walter Scott Bart’, engraved E. Smith 1822. A version from the Ilchester Estates (deposited in the NPG 1946-92), showing the same head with variations in the drapery, was attributed to Closterman by Piper (D. Piper, ‘The Chesterfield House Literary Portraits’, in R. Wellek & A. Ribeiro eds., Essays in Memory of James Marshall Osborn, 1979, p 190).

c.1690?
Painting by John Closterman, engraved W. Faithorne II (J. Chaloner Smith, British Mezzotinto Portraits, 9) as a bust-length oval with long wig and lace cravat (M. Rogers, ‘John and John Baptist Closterman: a catalogue of their works’, Wal. Soc., XLIX,1983, no.28), exhibited Closterman, NPG, 1981, no.7, illus. Probably a half- or three-quarter-length painting.

c.1693
Painting by Godfrey Kneller, see NPG 2083.

1698
Painting by Godfrey Kneller, see under NPG 57.

c.1700
Painting by James Maubert, see NPG 1133.

Posthumous
c.1722
Unattributed stone laureate bust on the painted monument in St Mary’s, Titchmarsh (E. Malone, Prose Works of John Dryden, I, 1800, pp 564-66).

1731
Marble bust by Pieter Scheemakers, replacing the head on a statue designed by James Gibbs erected in 1720. Westminster Abbey (I. Roscoe, ‘Peter Scheemakers’, Wal. Soc., LXI, 1999, no.8). Other marble busts by Scheemakers recorded by I. Roscoe, ‘Peter Scheemakers’, Wal. Soc., LXI, 1999, nos. 135 and 163 (bequeathed by Pope to Hagley 1743; illus. Joseph Spence, Observations, Anecdotes, and Characters of Books and Men, collected from conversation, ed. J. M. Osborn, 1966, f.p.25) and a cast (no.303, now at Canons Ashby). A plaster bust after Scheemakers c.1755 is in the Trinity College Library, Cambridge (M. Baker, ‘The Portrait Sculpture’ in D. McKetterick ed., The Making of the Wren Library, Trinity College, Cambridge, 1995, p 117).

1753
Painting by Thomas Hudson, based on the 1698 Kneller pattern, extended to whole-length, left hand on knee, right in front of cloak. Trinity College, Cambridge, presented by M. Pettiward 1753. Engraved as a half-length C. E. Wagstaff 1834.

c.1756
Plaster bust by John Cheere, modelled in different sizes, with slight variations in costume. Examples at Stourhead, York Art Gallery (from Kirkleatham; T. Friedman & T. Clifford, The Man at Hyde Park Corner, exhibition catalogue, Temple Newsam, Leeds, and Marble Hill, Twickenham, 1974, no.56), Liverpool Museum, Sotheby’s, 12 April 1990, lot 134, and Christie’s South Kensington, 6-7 July 1999, lot 895.
A statuette by Cheere was being marketed in 1754 (T. Friedman & T. Clifford, The Man at Hyde Park Corner, exhibition catalogue, Temple Newsam, Leeds, and Marble Hill, Twickenham, 1974, Appendix D).
Later busts were produced by Wedgwood c.1775 (see T. Friedman & T. Clifford, The Man at Hyde Park Corner, exhibition catalogue, Temple Newsam, Leeds, and Marble Hill, Twickenham, 1974, under no.56), with a medallion, possibly derived from the Scheemakers bust of 1731 (R. Reilly & G. Savage, Wedgwood, the Portrait Medallions, 1973, p 124).
Busts of five sizes by Charles Harris (Catalogue of Statues, Bas Reliefs, Bustos, &c. of Charles Harris, statuary, Opposite to the new Church in the Strand, LONDON, c.1790); a 19th-century bronzed plaster bust by P. Sarti of Dean Street is at Wimpole Hall (M. Baker, ‘The Portrait Sculpture’ in D. McKetterick ed., The Making of the Wren Library, Trinity College, Cambridge, 1995, p 118), and an undated wooden bust at Balliol College, Oxford (Cat. 1990, no.46).

E. Malone, Prose Works of John Dryden, I, 1800 and R. Bell, Dryden, English Poets, I, 1854 mention further, unidentified portraits: a drawing signed PL at Canons Ashby, from Sir Gilbert Pickering of Titchmarsh and William Walcot jr. of Oundle; a Kneller belonging to Ralph Sneyd of Kiel, Staffs.; an ‘original portrait’ at Bilton which had belonged to Addison with J. Bridgeman Simpson; a drawing by ‘Fab. Steele’ with the Rev Mr Crutwell, from the Rev Mr Bilston.

Doubtful Portraits
Unattributed painting c.1680, three-quarter-length standing, right hand on hip, left arm on table, bequeathed to the Fitzwilliam Museum by Maj. P. C. D. Mundy, 1959, but subsequently de-accessioned; J. M. Osborn (D. Piper, ‘The Chesterfield House Literary Portraits’, in R. Wellek & A. Ribeiro eds., Essays in Memory of James Marshall Osborn, 1979, p 179); exhibited Second Special Exhibition of National Portraits ( ... William and Mary to MDCCC), South Kensington, 1867, no.65 lent C. B. Dryden.

Drawing by T. Forster 1697, bust to left, own hair, with gown, signed and dated, sold framed as an oval; by descent through Dryden and Mundy families, Sotheby’s, 10 March 1975, lot 24 (R. Bell, Dryden, English Poets, I, 1854, pp 97-98, as inscribed purchased by my Father, Anno 1730, from Dryden’s sister and in the possession of Thomas Grignon, 1792).

Miniature, bust-length oval to right with grey hair, Solly sale, Sotheby’s, 27 June 1940, lot 16; exhibited South Kensington, 1862, no.2622 (Sir George Scharf’s Sketch Books, 62:111).



This extended catalogue entry is from the National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: John Ingamells, National Portrait Gallery: Later Stuart Portraits 1685-1714, National Portrait Gallery, 2009, and is as published then. For the most up-to-date details on individual Collection works, we recommend reading the information provided in the Search the Collection results on this website in parallel with this text.