British Portraits Collection

This collection features portraits of royal and noble sitters from the first great era of British painting: the Tudor period (1485-1603) including Henry VIII, Elizabeth I and Edward VI.

In this predominantly Protestant time, images of royalty which embodied the strength and wealth of Britain replaced religious iconography as the principal subject for court painters.

The collection also encompasses work from the Stuart (1603-1714) and Georgian (1714-1837) periods, including portraits by Sir Joshua Reynolds and Sir William Beechey, plus two celebrated views of London by Venetian artist Canaletto, who arrived in Britain in the mid-1740s.

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