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Alice Sherard, Lady Brownlow (1659-1721)

John Riley (London 1646 – London 1691) and John Closterman (Osnabrück 1660 – London 1711)

Category

Art / Oil paintings

Date

circa 1685 - 1688

Materials

Oil on canvas

Measurements

2235 x 1245 mm (88 x 49 in)

Place of origin

England

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Collection

Belton House, Lincolnshire (Accredited Museum)

On show at

Belton House, Lincolnshire, Midlands, National Trust

NT 436005.2

Caption

This painting is one of the four 'verie large Pictures' that seem to have been in the Saloon at Belton since 1688. When Riley painted these pictures, he appears to have had the assistance of the recently-arrived John Closterman. He reputedly got £40 a full-length, painting only the heads himself, and giving Closterman just 30s (£1.50) for all the drapery Alice was the daughter of Richard Sherard of Lobthorpe (d.1668) and Margaret Dewe. In 1676 she married her second cousin, 'Young' Sir John Brownlow, in conformity with the 'earnest desire' of their childless great-uncle, 'Old' Sir John Brownlow, who settled his estates on them and their male heirs. She continued to live at Belton after the death of her husband, concerning herself chiefly with arranging splendid matches for their daughters. Her last act was the rebuilding of the chancel of Belton Church in 1721.

Summary

Oil painting on canvas, Alice Sherard, Lady Brownlow (1659-1721) by John Riley (London 1646 – London 1691) and John Closterman (Osnabrück 1660 – London 1711), circa 1685. Inscribed. A full-length portrait of the daughter of Richard Sherard (d.1668) of Lobthorpe and Margaret Dewe, as a young woman, standing, her right arm leaning on a winged putto-term and cartouche adorned stone pedestal on a terrace wearing a brown dress and blue mantle. When Riley painted the 4 pictures at Belton (NT 436004.1-2 and 436005.1-2), he appears to have had the assistance of the recently-arrived John Closterman, and reputedly got £40 a full length, painting only the heads himself and giving Closterman just 30s (£1.50) for all the draperyInscribed. In conformity with the 'earnest desire' of their childless great uncle, 'Old' Sir John Brownlow who settled his estates on them she married her second cousin 'Young' Sir John Brownlow, 3rd Bt. (1659-1697), son of Sir Richard Brownlow, 2nd Bt (1628-1668) and Elizabeth Freke (1634-1684), on 27 March 1676 at Westminster Abbey. Her husband built Belton. She bore him five daughters. In 1697 he comitted suicide in the midst of apparent good fortune. She continued to live at Belton after the death of her husband, concerning herself chiefly with arranging splendid matches for their daughters: Elizabeth Brownlow, Countess of Exeter (1681-1723); Alicia Brownlow, Lady Guilford (1684-1727); Margaret Brownlow (1687-1710); Jane Brownlow, Duchess of Ancaster (1689-1736) and Eleanor Brownlow, Viscountess Tyrconnel (1691-1730).

Provenance

Listed in the inventory of 1688; purchased with a grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund (NHMF) from Edward John Peregrine Cust, 7th Baron Brownlow, C. St J. (b.1936) in 1984

Credit line

Belton House, The Brownlow Collection (acquired with the help of the National Heritage Memorial Fund by the National Trust in 1984)

Marks and inscriptions

Brownlowe/Wife of John/ Riley/Fec.

Makers and roles

John Riley (London 1646 – London 1691) and John Closterman (Osnabrück 1660 – London 1711) , artist

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