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Oliver Cromwell

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Oliver Cromwell

after Samuel Cooper
oil on canvas, feigned oval, based on a work of circa 1656
8 3/4 in. x 6 1/2 in. (222 mm x 165 mm)
Transferred from British Museum, 1879
Primary Collection
NPG 588

Images

Ebony frames were fashionable in the mid-17th…

Sitterback to top

  • Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658), Lord Protector of England. Sitter associated with 224 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • Samuel Cooper (1609-1672), Miniature painter. Artist associated with 111 portraits, Sitter in 4 portraits.

Related worksback to top

Linked publicationsback to top

  • Cooper, John, Great Britons: The Great Debate, 2002, p. 67
  • Piper, David, Catalogue of Seventeenth Century Portraits in the National Portrait Gallery, 1625-1714, 1963, p. 94
  • Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 155
  • Simon, Jacob, The Art of the Picture Frame: Artists, Patrons and the Framing of Portraits in Britain, 1997 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 8 November 1996 - 9 February 1997), p. 51, 152 Read entry

    Veneered pine, mitred and pinned lap joint, the joints not mirroring the adjacent corners but turned through ninety degrees, the veneer of an ebonised red hardwood, the sight edge of rosewood the frame altered and the rebate perhaps enlarged. 1 15⁄ 16 inches wide.

    This frame is not original to the picture, but the thickness and style of the ebonised hardwood ripple mouldings, applied to a pine back frame, suggest that it may be seventeenth-century in date.

Subjects & Themesback to top

Events of 1656back to top

Current affairs

The Quaker, James Nayler, rides on horseback into Bristol in imitation of Christ entering Jerusalem. He is imprisoned for blasphemy.
Oliver Cromwell reluctantly calls a second Protectorate Parliament hoping a compliant parliament will raise money urgently required for the Anglo-Spanish War and maintenance of military government at home.

Art and science

Political theorist, James Harrington, publishes his influential magnus opus, The Commonwealth of Oceana, which advocates for a utopian republic.
Gardener and collector, John Tradescant the Younger, publishes England's first museum catalogue, Musaeum Tradescantianum, for his museum of rarities housed in his home, called 'The Ark'.

International

War with Spain officially declared. Admiral, Edward Montagu, Earl of Sandwich concludes a treaty with Portugal eagerly requiring support to free itself from Spain.
Admiral Robert Blake, keeping the fleet at sea throughout the winter to blockade Spain's coastline, enables Captain Richard Stayner to capture a Spanish plate fleet.

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