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Three unknown men, of which two formerly known as John Montagu, 2nd Duke of Montagu, James O'Hara, 2nd Baron Tyrawley

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- subject matching 'Group portraits'

Three unknown men, of which two formerly known as John Montagu, 2nd Duke of Montagu, James O'Hara, 2nd Baron Tyrawley, by John Verelst, 1712 -NPG 2034 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Later Stuart Portraits Catalogue

Three unknown men, of which two formerly known as John Montagu, 2nd Duke of Montagu, James O'Hara, 2nd Baron Tyrawley

probably by John Verelst
1712
57 in. x 69 1/2 in. (1448 mm x 1765 mm)
NPG 2034

Inscriptionback to top

Signed and dated, lower right: V [or JV] pt/1712.

This portraitback to top

The attribution to John Verelst, first suggested by Waterhouse, depends upon the rather odd signature, previously associated with John Vanderbank.
Accepted in 1924 as a portrait of John Montagu, 2nd Duke of Montagu, with James O'Hara, 2nd Baron Tyrawley, and a Priest. These identities are not well supported; comparison with other portraits of Tyrawley and Montagu is not conclusive and an occasion for such a group has not been identified. The 1911 Boughton catalogue identified James Tyrawley on the right holding a silver snuff box, with on the left the Duke of Montagu (a relative of the Dukes of Buccleuch who presented NPG 2034 in 1924). Yet the right-hand figure appears the more distinguished. In 1724 Tyrawley was simply Captain O'Hara, while Montagu, who had little taste for war and had inherited his dukedom three years before, already held a Court appointment.
James O'Hara (1681/2-1773) campaigned in Flanders and Spain; he became colonel in 1713, Baron Kilmaine (I) in 1722 and 2nd Baron Tyrawley in 1724; he later followed a diplomatic career in Russia and Portugal. Horace Walpole described him as 'haughty and contemptuous, with an undaunted portion of spirit'. An inscribed three-quarter-length portrait in the Landesgalerie Hanover, possibly by Jervas c.1725, shows him wearing a Baron's coronation robes, his coronet beside him, and Tyrawley appeared four times in Reynolds' sitter books in January and February 1758 (according to Graves & Cronin, A History of the Works of Sir Joshua Reynolds, 1899-1901, III, p 994, a portrait of Tyrawley by Reynolds was sold by Col. O'Hara at Christie's, 28 May 1824, lot 31.

Referenceback to top

Piper 1963
D. Piper, Catalogue of the Seventeenth Century Portraits in the National Portrait Gallery 1625-1714, 1963, p 243.

Scott 1911
C. H. Scott, Catalogue of Pictures at Boughton House, 1911, no.195.

Waterhouse 1981
E. K. Waterhouse, The Dictionary of British 18th Century Painters in oils and crayons, 1981, p 393.

Waterhouse 1994
E. K. Waterhouse, Painting in Britain 1530-1790, 5th ed., 1994, p 347n2.

Provenanceback to top

Bought c.1890 from an unknown source by John, 7th Duke of Buccleuch; presented by him 1924.


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.

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