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William Paget, 1st Baron Paget

© National Portrait Gallery, London

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William Paget, 1st Baron Paget

by Unknown Flemish artist
oil on panel, 1549
17 3/4 in. x 14 1/4 in. (451 mm x 362 mm)
Purchased, 1894
Primary Collection
NPG 961

Sitterback to top

Artistback to top

This portraitback to top

This portrait was probably painted in Brussels in June 1549, when Paget was there to negotiate with Charles V.

Linked publicationsback to top

Placesback to top

  • Place made: Belgium (probably Brussels, Belgium)

Events of 1549back to top

Current affairs

The Act of Uniformity is passed by the House of Lords making use of the new Book of Common Prayer compulsory.
Edward Seymour falls from power. John Dudley, Earl of Warwick assumes the powers of Lord Protector.
Robert Kett leads an anti-enclosure revolt in Norfolk. He petitions the King with a list of grievances calling for more rights for commoners. The rebellion is crushed by Warwick and Kett executed for High Treason.

Art and science

English politicians and merchants increasingly sit for portraits during visits to Europe. The portrait of the statesman William Paget, 1st Baron Paget is probably painted during a diplomatic stay in Brussels.


The Seventeen Provinces (covering present-day Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg) are unified by the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V into a single entity.
Death of Pope Paul III.

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Dr Elena Kosmopoulou

04 February 2017, 08:11

The medallion seems to be St George on horseback, a reference to the battle of Nafpaktos (7 October 1571). The Flemish connection with Byzantium, was at least since the time of Baldwin IX, who sacked Constantinople during the forth crusade in 1204 and their subsequent presence in the City, where 'feeble Flemish counts tottered uneasily on the great golden throne of Constantinople' (Brian de Johgh). I am not an expert on the field but if I was researching further the topic I would look at the veterans of this battle and maybe even a royal connection. There is a church of St. George in Nafpaktos.

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