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By Katharine Baetjer

Британская портретная живопись из собрания The Metropolitan Museum of paintings

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Gift of Junius S. L" t j' ;1 1; -r;r C: "'s? ,? ;I, n :I I? ;1:--ir "s" -?? *.. --? : -I ti G*' ----i srs'V-! FaneandJones, a relativeof the celebratedarchitect,were neighborsin the country,at Fulbeck,in Lincolnshire. MorenearlyFane's equalin pictorialtermsis CharlesBlair,who wears a red coat and riding boots. Henry Fanehimself is silhouettedagainstan arbor,from which, rather incongruously,a sculptureof a male caryatid emergesabove his head. Coussmaker's likenessmay be a good one, but by comparison with more authenticallymilitarysubjects, the sitter'sself-satisfiedlook must not have firedthe artist'simagination.

He succeeded to the dukedom of Dorset in 1799, when he was five; was educated at Harrow, where he was a schoolmate of Lord Byron, and matriculated at Oxford. At twenty-one, during a visit to Ireland, he went to Lord Powerscourt's to hunt and was killed in a fall from his horse. His sister Mary, later countess of Plymouth and Countess Amherst, died childless in I864. Elizabeth, Countess De La Warr, left Knole to her younger sons, one of whom was SackvilleWest's grandfather. The Hoppner portrait was sold from the house in I929, in partial payment of succession duties upon the death of her father.

From 1797 he was in St. Petersburgas courtpainterto AlexanderI, emperorof Russia,and in 1807he settledin Philadelphia,where he was a founding memberof the AmericanSociety of Artists. The head, slenderhands,and the coat collar,tie, and ruffleare closely observed. Beechey was a year younger thanMiles. They studiedtogetherand exhibitedin the samevenue. PerhapsMilesencouraged Beechey to set up a studio in his native Norfolk. Both were drawingmastersand both enjoyedthe patronageof the royal family duringthe subsequentperiod, as Miles was miniaturistto Queen Charlottefrom 1794until he went to Russia.

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British Portraits in The Metropolitan Museum of Art by Katharine Baetjer

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