The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

Advanced Collection search

Charles Beale the Elder

1 portrait of Charles Beale the Elder

Charles Beale the Elder, by Mary Beale, circa 1660 -NPG 1279 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Later Stuart Portraits Catalogue

Charles Beale the Elder

by Mary Beale
circa 1660
9 1/2 in. x 8 1/4 in. (241 mm x 210 mm)
NPG 1279

This portraitback to top

An informal study, probably painted c.1660; the head is finished but the drapery perfunctory.
The identity of Charles Beale, first suggested by Ida Procter in 1951 (verbally), seems confirmed by the warts on the chin and lip and the close similarity with Charles’s head in the family piece of c.1659-60 in the Geffrye Museum (see under Mary Beale).

Provenanceback to top

William Cannon, London, from whom purchased 1900 as an unattributed portrait of Thomas Shadwell.1

1 A second portrait of Charles Beale was mistaken for Thomas Shadwell.

Exhibitionsback to top

‘The Excellent Mrs Mary Beale’, Geffrye Museum, London, and Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne, 1975–76, no.3 as c.1663; Gawthorpe Hall, Lancs. 1987–97; Mary Beale, Geffrye Museum, London, 1999–2000, no.2 as c.1660; The Stuart Portrait, Southampton, 2001, no.13.


This extended catalogue entry is from the National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: John Ingamells, National Portrait Gallery: Later Stuart Portraits 1685–1714, National Portrait Gallery, 2009, and is as published then. For the most up-to-date details on individual Collection works, we recommend reading the information provided in the Search the Collection results on this website in parallel with this text.

View all known portraits for Charles Beale the Elder

View all known portraits for Mary Beale

Play

Tudor and Elizabethan matching pairs

Test your memory by playing our matching pairs game. Three levels of difficulty make it fun for the whole family.

Test your skill

Regency familiar faces

Rearrange tiles to uncover sitters from the Gallery's Collection by playing our puzzle game.

Play today

Who do you think you were?

Answer a few lifestyle questions about the Elizabethan period and discover your inner Elizabethan!

Start now