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Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales

Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales, by Peter Turnerelli, 1816 -NPG 4470 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Regency Portraits Catalogue

Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales

by Peter Turnerelli
1816
28 1/2 in. (724 mm) high
NPG 4470

Inscriptionback to top

Incised on the socle: P. Turnerelli/Fecit London/1816

This portraitback to top

Turnerelli had exhibited a bust of the Princess as a child RA 1802 (1084), now at Windsor Castle; a black terracotta version is in the Dynastic Museum, Brussels, exhibited 'The Lion and the Unicorn' NPG 1966. He became Sculptor in Ordinary to the Queen and the Royal Family in 1801 and thereafter taught sculpture to Princess Caroline (John Gilmartin, 'Peter Turnerelli' in Irish Georgian Society Quarterly Bulletin, X, 1967, pp 3-19).
On Princess Charlotte's wedding morning she had a two hour sitting for 'the nuptial bust' (Robert Huish, Memoirs of HRH Charlotte Princess of Wales, 1818, p 266), and when the NPG was first offered the bust in 1910 it was accompanied by a letter from Turnerelli's son confirming that this was indeed according to family tradition 'the nuptial bust'. The 1906 sale catalogue of the Rev D. S. Spedding's collection described the lot as '… the original marble nuptial bust, life size, of the Princess Charlotte … The last sitting for this fine work of art was given to Turnerelli by Princess Charlotte on the day of her Marriage'.
Versions are in the Royal Collection, Windsor Castle, and at Christie's 29 April 1980 (60), both dated 1817. A slightly different type, with hair piled on top of her head, was offered to the NPG in 1861 (Sir George Scharf’s Trustees’ Sketchbooks, V, 78). Drawing, watercolour and enamel miniatures by Grimaldi 'after Turnerelli' are listed in Rev Alexander Grimaldi, A Catalogue of Paintings, Drawings & Engravings by and after William Grimaldi, 1873. An impression from a medal die by T. Wyon from Turnerelli's bust was exhibited RA 1818 (977).

Physical descriptionback to top

Head and shoulders in a lace-trimmed dress, hair braided at the back and in ringlets on sides and forehead; lobe of her right ear is broken.

Provenanceback to top

Rev D. S. Spedding of Hutton Roof, Kirby Lonsdale, and his sale in April 1906, bought by W. S. Kingdon and by him offered to the NPG in 1910; offered again by Mrs E. J. W. Kingdon in 1937; acquired by Rupert Gunnis and bequeathed by him 1965.

Exhibitionsback to top

Probably RA 1817 (1044) - 'The nuptial bust of HRH Princess Charlotte of Saxe-Coburg'.


This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: Richard Walker, Regency Portraits, National Portrait Gallery, 1985, 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.

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