Four Children of Sir Thomas Lucy III (1585 - 1640) and Alice Spencer (Robert, Richard, Constance and Margaret)
British (English) School
Art / Oil paintings
Oil on canvas
1245 x 1702 mm (49 x 67 in)
Place of origin
EnglandOrder this image
Charlecote Park, Warwickshire (Accredited Museum)
On show at
Thomas Lucy III married Alice Spencer in 1610. This portrait shows four of their children, and is inscribed with their ages: 5, 3, 2 and 1 respectively. The baby, Richard Lucy, is shown seated in a high chair. His elder brother, Robert, is shown in a dress, which was traditional at that time. He is shown treading on the baby’s blanket, which might serve to demonstrate his superior status, in spite of not being seated, which would normally indicate superiority. Some decades later, the pattern on the girls’ dresses inspired the pattern on the wallpaper in the Library at Charlecote.
Oil painting on canvas, Four Children of Sir Thomas Lucy III and Alice Spencer (Robert, Richard, Constance and Margaret), English School, inscribed: ANO DONI 1619 and with respective ages of children each, in gold next to their heads: AETAtis Suae 5, 3, 2, 1. Constance Lucy, later Lady Smith (5 years), Margaret Lucy (3 years), Robert Lucy (2 years) and Richard Lucy (1 year). Constance or Constantia, the eldest child and her younger sister Margaret stand at right, holding hands, wearing gold brocade dresses, the younger holding sister a flower, on far right. The baby in the chair is Richard Lucy, wrapped in a red cloak, on Constance's right. At the left stands Robert in a gold dress and white pinafore with a robin perched on his right hand, and treading on the baby's red cloak (?to indicate a superior status). The composition framed by a pelmet and drawn curtain. The fabric of the dresses helped inspire the pattern of the Library wallpaper. Four of the children as recorded by the Herald's visitation in 1619. Spencer the eldest son, the twin of Margaret was presumably painted seperately on his own (Harleian Society, vol. 12 , p. 288). Later they had two more children: Fulke and Alice Lucy.
Presented to the National Trust by Sir Montgomerie Fairfax-Lucy (1896 – 1965), two years after the death of his father, Sir Henry Ramsay-Fairfax, 3rd Bt (1870 – 1944), with Charlecote Park and its chief contents, in 1946
Charlecote Park, The Fairfax-Lucy Collection (National Trust)
Makers and roles
British (English) School, artist