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'Apotheosis of Her Royal Highness the Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales'

35 of 49 portraits of Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales

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'Apotheosis of Her Royal Highness the Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales'

by Fry & Wright, after Edward Francisco Burney, after R.P. Read
stipple engraving, published 25 April 1818
19 in. x 22 7/8 in. (484 mm x 580 mm) paper size
acquired unknown source, 1958
Reference Collection
NPG D33524

Sitterback to top

Artistsback to top

  • Edward Francisco Burney (1760-1848), Artist and cousin of Frances d'Arblay ('Fanny Burney'). Artist associated with 19 portraits, Sitter associated with 1 portrait.
  • Fry & Wright (active 1818). Artist associated with 1 portrait.
  • R.P. Read (active 1818). Artist associated with 1 portrait.

This portraitback to top

This highly sentimental engraving indicates how Princess Charlotte came to be viewed as an ideal in the years after her death. She and her stillborn baby are represented ascending to heaven. The accompanying key emphasises the heavy symbolism of the work, including the motif of the emblematic 'finest Rose' fallen with 'its infant bud' in the front right corner of the image. This engraving was possibly one inspiration for the design of the similarly-themed white marble memorial for the princess created by Matthew Wyatt, paid for by public subscription, but privately located at the west end of St George's Chapel, Windsor.

Placesback to top

Events of 1818back to top

Current affairs

Death of Charlotte Sophia of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, George III's Queen since 1761.
Official enquiry initiated into Queen Caroline's conduct abroad.

Art and science

Mary Shelley anonymously publishes her masterpiece Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus which reflects growing concern about the role of morality in science.
Lord Byron completes his romance Childe Harolde's Pilgrimage, whose gloomy, dissolute hero was probably based on the writer himself.

International

Stamford Raffles acquires authorisation to construct a fort at Singapore marking the beginning of its development as a centre of East-West trade.
Congress of European Alliance at Aix-La-Chapelle. Lord Castlereagh plays a central role in establishing a pan-Europe peace settlement to bring a chastened France back into the world of political respectability.

Tell us more back to top

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Michael Burden

14 October 2017, 11:43

Yes, I assume you know (but I canlt see it here), that this appears to be based on Burney's drawing at Corfe Castle, NT 537599.

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