Queen Mary II
- Extended Catalogue Entry
Queen Mary II
attributed to Jan van der Vaart
oil on canvas, circa 1692-1694
49 in. x 39 1/2 in. (1245 mm x 1003 mm)
Sitterback to top
- Queen Mary II (1662-1694), Reigned with William III 1689-94. Sitter associated with 96 portraits.
This portraitback to top
The eldest daughter of James, Duke of York, Mary was educated under the direction of Bishop Compton, and remained a devoted member of the Church of England. Although something of a Puritan, in her youth she was complimented by John Dryden for her performance in a masque. After her marriage to William III of Orange in 1677 she learnt Dutch and strove with great success to win the hearts of her people. In this portrait she is seen in robes of state with a magnificently jewelled crown and sceptre on the ledge to her right. Honeysuckle springs from behind the pillar, there are pink roses on the left and in the distance is a building with a cupola under a cloudy sky.
Related worksback to top
Linked publicationsback to top
- Cannadine, Sir David (Introduction); Cooper, Tarnya; Stewart, Louise; MacGibbon, Rab; Cox, Paul; Peltz, Lucy; Moorhouse, Paul; Broadley, Rosie; Jascot-Gill, Sabina ., Tudors to Windsors: British Royal Portraits, 2018 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas, USA, 7 October 2018 -3 February 2019. Bendigo Art Gallery, Australia, 16 March - 14 July 2019.), p. 118 Read entry
Although this portrait shows Mary II as Queen of England, with the crown and sceptre beside her, it is based on an earlier portrait painted by Willem Wissing when she was in the Netherlands, where she is shown in an informal version of contemporary dress, which was fashionable in portraiture.
- Ingamells, John, Later Stuart Portraits 1685-1714, 2009, p. 173
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 416
Subjects & Themesback to top
Events of 1692back to top
Current affairsStatesman and member of the Privy Council, John Churchill is dismissed from office by the monarchs and later imprisoned on suspicion of collaborating with Jacobites.
Jacobite sympathisers in the Scottish Highlands, the MacIain clan, are murdered by government troops led by Robert Campbell, in the Glencoe Massacre.
Art and scienceAntiquary, Thomas Rymer, is appointed historiographer royal. Rymer would spend the rest of his life transcribing the history of England's alliances and treaties with foreign countries, publishing them in sixteen volumes.
Nahum Tate is appointed Poet Laureate.
Composer, Henry Purcell, stages the dramatic opera, The Fairy-Queen.