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Dorothy, Lady Temple

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Dorothy, Lady Temple

by Caspar Netscher
oil on canvas, 1671
18 3/4 in. x 15 1/4 in. (476 mm x 387 mm)
Purchased, 1951
Primary Collection
NPG 3813

Sitterback to top

Artistback to top

  • Caspar Netscher (1639-1684), Dutch artist. Artist associated with 9 portraits, Sitter in 2 portraits.

This portraitback to top

The daughter of a Royalist soldier, Dorothy Osborne fell in love with the son of a Roundhead during the Civil War. During her long courtship with Sir William Temple, she wrote a series of letters (published 1888) which provide an invaluable record of aristocratic country life during the Commonwealth. At the end of the War, the lovers' families were still against the match, but when Temple's devotion remained constant after Dorothy was seriously disfigured by smallpox, they were finally married in 1655.

Related worksback to top

  • NPG 3812: Sir William Temple, Bt (companion portrait)

Linked publicationsback to top

Subjects & Themesback to top

Events of 1671back to top

Current affairs

Anne Hyde, first wife of James, Duke of York, dies soon after the birth of their youngest child, Edgar.
Adventurer, Thomas Blood, attempts to steal the Crown Jewels, but in a political manoeuvre, the king pardons Blood in an impressive show of royal mercy.

Art and science

Dramatist, William Wycherley's play, Love in a Wood, staged at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, is watched by the king's former mistress, Barbara Villiers, with whom Wycherley would have an affair.
John Milton publishes epic poem, Paradise Regained together with another of his major works, the play, Samson Agonistes.


French Minister of Finance, Jean-Baptiste Colbert, founds Académie Royale d'Architecture. A patron of arts, Colbert, who greatly enriched the Louvre's collection, was charged with overseeing the cultural affairs of France, and was responsible for founding several national institutions in France, including, Académie des sciences and Observatoire de Paris.

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