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Lady Mary Wortley Montagu with her son, Edward Wortley Montagu, and attendants

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu with her son, Edward Wortley Montagu, and attendants, by Jean Baptiste Vanmour, circa 1717 -NPG 3924 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Early Georgian Portraits Catalogue

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu with her son, Edward Wortley Montagu, and attendants

attributed to Jean Baptiste Vanmour
circa 1717
27 1/4 in. x 35 3/4 in. (693 mm x 909 mm)
NPG 3924

This portraitback to top

Attribution is based chiefly on comparison with the artist's portrait of Ahmed III in the Rijksmuseum (2397). Vanmour (1671-1737) was in Constantinople from 1699 and painter-in-ordinary to the sultan from 1725, and despite lack of supporting evidence he might well have painted the sitter among the notables at court. J. E. Schmidt and Johann Selmer can be eliminated as artists for NPG 3924 since they arrived in Constantinople only in 1719 when the sitter had already left. [1] A whole length with wooded background, apparently based on NPG 3924, [2] was sold by the trustees of the Wharncliffe Settled Estates, Christie's, 23 May 1958, lot 51, as a Charles Philips; it is now owned by R. Halsband. Another portrait which is possibly related, at Debenham Coe, 10 November 1970, lot 73, shows the sitter with a rolled paper in her right hand and a view of shipping, left.

Footnotesback to top

1) A. Boppé, Les Peintres du Bosphore, Paris, 1911, passim.
2) A portrait similar in style in the Wharncliffe collection, had an inscription or signature Eduardo Cadella, of whom nothing further is known.

Physical descriptionback to top

Blue ermine-edged coat, open, over gold dress, turban in Turkish fashion; Edward in long white dress; a female servant, left, playing the Tambur (a Turkish lute) and a Turkish messenger, right, presenting a letter; dais with carpet, landscape background with a view of Constantinople.

Conservationback to top

Rubbed; cleaned, 1955.

Provenanceback to top

Bought, 1958, from the Wharncliffe Estates - on loan from 1955; presumably descended through the sitter's great-grandson who was created Baron Wharncliffe, 1826; sketched by Scharf, 1860, when in the collection of Lord Wharncliffe.

This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: John Kerslake, Early Georgian Portraits, Her Majesty's Stationery Office, 1977, 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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