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  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1732 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Zincke, Christian Friedrich, born 1683 - died 1767 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Enamel on copper, pierced gold and ivory frame

  • Credit Line:

    The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Collection on loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Gold, Silver and Mosaics, Room 71, The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Galleries, case 8, shelf 7 []

Queen Caroline and her husband, the future King George II, arrived in London in 1714, when her father-in-law ascended the throne. Zincke enjoyed their patronage, and it is possible that this image is the product of the time he is recorded spending at court drawing portraits of the Royal Family in 1732.

In the 17th century, new techniques of painting enamels allowed delicate portraits resembling tiny oil paintings to be created. This enamel portraiture in miniature was a truly international art. Many enamellers travelled in order to find new markets, while others migrated to escape religious persecution. Enamel miniatures were first fashionable in continental Europe, but were particularly in vogue in Britain from the 1720s to 1760s.

Sir Arthur Gilbert and his wife Rosalinde formed one of the world's great decorative art collections, including silver, mosaics, enamelled portrait miniatures and gold boxes. Arthur Gilbert donated his extraordinary collection to Britain in 1996.

Physical description

Oval portrait miniature of Queen Caroline of Ansbach wearing a purple dress and an ermine-lined purple cape. The miniature is enamel on copper and the oval, pierced scroll frame is of gold with ivory backing.

Place of Origin

England (made)


ca. 1732 (made)


Zincke, Christian Friedrich, born 1683 - died 1767 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Enamel on copper, pierced gold and ivory frame


Height: 12.25 cm, Width: 8.68 cm, Depth: 0.66 cm

Object history note

Provenance: R.H. Rockliff. Sale, Sotheby's London, lot 138, 11/11/1947. Estate of the Hon. Lady Shelley-Rolls sale, Christie's London, lot 62, 13/02/1962. S.J. Phillips, London, 1980.

Descriptive line

Enamel miniature on copper of Queen Caroline of Ansbach, in a pierced gold and ivory frame, England, ca.1732, Friedrich Christian Zincke.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Coffin, Sarah and Bodo Hofstetter. Portrait Miniatures in Enamel. London: Philip Wilson Publishers Ltd. in association with the Gilbert Collection, 2000. 168 p., ill. Cat. no. 72, p. 119. ISBN 0856675334.
Schroder, Timothy, ed. The Gilbert Collection at the V&A. London (V&A Publishing) 2009, p. 90, plate 70. ISBN9781851775934

Labels and date

Queen Caroline and George II
(7) about 1732; (8) about 1750

In 1732, Zincke spent time at the English court drawing
portraits of the royal family. William Prewett, who
trained in Zincke’s studio, was one of the first successful
English-born portrait enamellers.

England; (7) Christian Friedrich Zincke
(about 1683–1767); (8) probably William Prewett (active 1730–50) Enamel on copper in gold frame, (7) with ivory backing Museum nos. Loan:Gilbert.279, 275:1-2008 [2009]


Copper; Gold; Enamel


Framing; Piercing; Painting


Enamels; Portraits; Metalwork


Metalwork Collection

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