Lot 306
  • 306

Attributed to Charles Guillaume Alexandre Bourgeois

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  • Charles Guillaume Alexandre Bourgeois
  • a portrait of Spencer, 8th Earl of Northampton (1738-1796); a portrait of Lady Frances Compton (d. 1832), with a miniature of the Spencer, 8th Earl of Northampton, French School verso
he seen in profile, with powered hair en queue, wearing a brown coat, buff waistcoat, lace jabot, encased in an ermine-lined drape, gold frame, glazed hair reverse; she, in profile, with powdered hair, wearing a blue coat, lace jabot and top hat; he verso, with powdered hair, wearing a brown coat, red waistcoat and knotted white cravat, an ermine-lined drape around his shoulders, gold frame

Catalogue Note

The artist Charles Guillaume Alexandre Bourgeois lived in Paris. The vast majority of his work takes the form of painted profiles against a dark blue or black ground. Although he is mostly remembered for his work as a miniaturist, he also painted larger portraits in oil.

Spencer Compton, 8th Earl of Northampton, was educated at Westminster. He served as an officer in the Coldstream Guards between 1759 - 1760 and was Groom of the Bedchamber from 1760-63. He became M.P of Northampton between 1761 and 1763. However, his attempted re-election in 1768 ‘almost ruined him’ and that year he ‘went to Switzerland for the rest of his life, partly for economy and partly because of health,’ (see Namier & Brooke, A history of Parliament, The Commons 1754-1790, vol. II, 1964 p. 242). It is not known when he and his daughter sat for the present works. Their costumes and hair-style, however, suggest that it was around 1790.