Oil painting on canvas, A Farm Labourer or Gardener, British (English) School, circa 1675-1690. An old labourer is standing by an open door through which a walled garden is visible. He looks upwards and points with his right hand. In his left hand is a pitchfork supported on his shoulder. At the right is a structure like an enclosed pump-house, projecting from the tile-topped brick wall receding behind, with a swivelling handle. The initials R. O. are inscribed on the structure, which may be an allusion to Richard Onslow (1601 - 1664) or his grandson (1654 - 1717). On the ground are gardening tools and two broken clay pipes. Two ends of a red sash emerge from beneath the subject's coat, which may represent some sort of livery.
Originally painted for Denzil Onslow (1640/1–1721) at Pyrford Court; acquired by the Ministry of Works from Gwendolen, Countess of Iveagh, in 1956, and transferred to the National Trust by HM Treasury in 1968.
Clandon Park, The Onslow Collection (National Trust)
Marks and inscriptions
Inscribed on the structure to the right: R. O.
Makers and roles
British (English) School, artist
previously catalogued as after Francis Barlow (Lincolnshire c.1626 - London 1704), artist
possibly Leendert Knijff (Haarlem 1650 – London 1721), artist
Whinney, Margaret Dickins. English art 1625-1714 1957., p.279
Clandon Park, Surrey, 1964: [National Trust; Pamela, Countess of Onslow] 1964, p.24
Clandon Park, Surrey, 2002: [National Trust; Sophie Chessum & Christopher Rowell], 2002, p.36, in the State Dining Room