1 of 23 portraits of Titus Oates
by Robert White
line engraving, engraved 1679
9 in. x 6 in. (229 mm x 152 mm)
Artistback to top
- Robert White (1645-1703), Engraver. Artist associated with 608 portraits, Sitter in 1 portrait.
This portraitback to top
In his youth Titus Oates was expelled from school, briefly imprisoned for libel and expelled from the navy. As chaplain to the Protestants in the Duke of Norfolk's household he became involved in generating anti-Catholic propaganda. In 1676 he was commissioned to produce diatribes against the Jesuits and the following year he became a Roman Catholic in order to infiltrate the Jesuit College at Valladolid in Spain. Expelled after five months, in 1678 Oates claimed before the Privy Council that there was a Jesuit plot to kill Charles II. The so-called 'Popish Plot' led to the conviction and murder of around thirty-five men. Oates, who had fabricated the claim, was later sentenced to life imprisonment for perjury but his sentence was reversed after four years when he was released and given a pension. This engraved portrait is captioned with the words: 'This is the true Originall taken from the Life, done for Henry Brome and Richard Chiswell. All others are counterfeit'.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 465
Events of 1679back to top
Current affairsCavalier Parliament dissolves over the exclusion crisis - removing James, Duke of York from the line of succession. First of three 'Exclusion Parliaments' assembles; William Russell, Lord Bedford, member of the nascent Whig party, introduces an Exclusion Bill.
James Scott, Duke of Monmouth, suppresses rebellious Scottish covenanters at Bothwell Bridge.
Art and scienceAn adaptation of Sophocles's Oedipus is published, a collaboration between poet laureate, John Dryden and playwright, Nathaniel Lee. It becomes a hugely successful stage production during the Restoration period.
Composer, Henry Purcell, becomes organist of Westminster Abbey.
InternationalThe daughter of Henrietta Anne of England and Philippe, Duke of Orleans, Marie Louise d'Orleans, marries Charles II of Spain. It was hoped the marriage would improve relations between France and Spain who had previously been at war over the Spanish Netherlands.
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