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Edwin Sandys; Cicely Sandys (née Wilford)

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Edwin Sandys; Cicely Sandys (née Wilford)

after Unknown artist
oil on canvas, late 17th century, based on a work of 1571
12 1/2 in. x 17 3/4 in. (318 mm x 451 mm)
Given by Thomas Myles Sandys, 1900
Primary Collection
NPG 1268

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This portraitback to top

This unusual double portrait is an example of a painting designed to hang in a domestic environment. The couple are probably represented here some years after their marriage. At this date the marriage of members of the clergy was only a recent phenomenon. The portrait is a copy of another painting dating from 1571.

Linked publicationsback to top

Events of 1571back to top

Current affairs

Secret papal agent Roberto di Ridolfi plots to restore Catholicism in England by overthrowing Queen Elizabeth I and marrying Mary, Queen of Scots to Thomas Howard, Duke of Norfolk. Norfolk is arrested for his part in the conspiracy.
Parliament formally endorses intolerance of Roman Catholicism, it becomes a treasonable offence to bring a Papal 'bull' into England and clerical obedience to the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion is enforced.

Art and science

The Royal Exchange opens in London.
The unusual painting of King Edward VI's triumph over the Pope is painted at about this time to commemorate the young king's anti-papal policies and to celebrate the successful re-establishment of the Church of England under Elizabeth I.


Ottoman forces take the port of Famagusta in Cyprus from Venice.
Pope Pius V calls a Holy League to halt the expansion of the Ottoman Empire in the Mediterranean. John of Austria, half-brother of Philip II of Spain, leads naval forces from Spain, the Papal States, Venice and Genoa to a decisive victory over the Ottoman fleet at the Battle of Lepanto. The victory is of great symbolic importance to European Mediterranean powers.

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