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Miniature

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    1845 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Bone, Henry Pierce, born 1779 - died 1855 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Enamel on copper, gilt metal

  • Credit Line:

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

  • Museum number:

    LOAN:GILBERT.245-2008

  • Gallery location:

    Gold, Silver and Mosaics, Room 71, The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Galleries, case 6, shelf DU2

Henry (1594-1612) was the eldest son of James I and brother of the future Charles I. In his teens he proved a great patron of the arts, forming the first Royal collection of art and launching important artists including architect Inigo Jones. He was regarded by many as embodying national hopes for a new age in English art and politics. The country was plunged into grief upon his death from typhoid fever at the age of only 18.

In the 17th century, new techniques of painting enamels allowed delicate portraits resembling tiny oil paintings to be created. These enamel miniatures were first fashionable in continental Europe, but were particularly in vogue in Britain from the 1720s to 1760s. Henry Bone (1755-1834) was a successful enameller in England. As a boy, he worked in William Cookworthy’s porcelain factory in Plymouth. It was there that he was introduced to the art of enamel painting. He exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1781 and became a Royal Academician in 1811. Many of his enamel portraits are copies of older full-scale paintings, including a series depicting prominent men and women from the Elizabethan period. His sons, Henry Pierce Bone (1779-1855) and William Bone Senior (active 1810-43), followed in his footsteps and became enamellers. Like his father, Henry Pierce Bone made enamel copies of paintings of historical figures.

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 Henry, Prince of Wales, shown facing left in a red, yellow and blue embroidered white doublet with lace bordering, standing white ruff, embroidered jerkin and the Order of the Garter on a blue ribbon. The frame is gilt copper with an egg and dart border and scrolling surmount.

Place of Origin

England (made)

Date

1845 (made)

Artist/maker

Bone, Henry Pierce, born 1779 - died 1855 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Enamel on copper, gilt metal

Marks and inscriptions

Signed, inscribed and dated 'Henry Prince of Wales, Son of James 1st, London Oct. 1845. Painted by Henry Pierce Bone. Enamel Painter to Her Majesty & H.R.H. Prince Albert &c From the Original by Vansomer in the Collection of the Earl of Craven, Combe Abbey.'
On the counter enamel

Dimensions

Height: 13.4 cm, Width: 9.6 cm, Depth: 0.95 cm

Object history note

Provenance: Sale, Sotheby's London, lot 52, 12/03/1984. Sale, Christie's, London, lot 25, April 21, 1998.

Descriptive line

Enamel miniature on copper of Henry, Prince of Wales, in a gilt copper frame, England, 1845, by Henry Pierce Bone.

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. 15, p. 63. ISBN 0856675334.

Labels and date

Henry, Prince of Wales
1845

Henry, Prince of Wales (1594–1612) was the son
of James I and the elder brother of Charles I. He was a
great patron of the arts, forming the first royal collection
of art. The country was plunged into grief at his death
from typhoid fever at the age of only eighteen.

England; Henry Pierce Bone (1779–1855),
after Robert Peake (died 1626)
Enamel on copper in gilded copper frame
Signed, inscribed and dated on counter-enamel
‘Henry Prince of Wales, Son of James 1.st, London Oct.
1845. Painted by Henry Pierce bone. Enamel Painter to Her
Majesty & H.R.H. Prince Albert &c
From the Original by Vansomer in the
Collection of the Earl of Craven, Combe Abbey’
Museum no. Loan:Gilbert.245-2008 [2009]

Production Note

Portrait after Robert Peake.

Materials

Enamel; Copper; Gold; Metal

Techniques

Gilding; Framing; Enamelling

Subjects depicted

Doublet; Boy; Order of the Garter

Categories

Portraits; Enamels

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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