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Details & Cataloguing

Master Paintings & 19th Century European Art

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New York

Studio of Sir Peter Lely
SOEST 1618 - 1680 LONDON
PORTRAIT OF LADY ESSEX (NÉE RICH) FINCH, LATER COUNTESS OF NOTTINGHAM

Catalogue Note

The question of likeness with Lely is always a difficult subject as even his contemporaries commented on the fact that many of his sitters looked similar – 'Mr Walker, ye Painter swore Lilly's Pictures, was all Brothers and Sister'. This sitter bears strong affinities to those in other works which have traditionally been called Nell Gwyn, the longtime mistress of Charles II and among Lely's most famous subjects, with whom many portraits by Lely and his studio have been associated, both correctly and incorrectly. 

1. The diary of Samuel Pepys, 18 April 1666.

Master Paintings & 19th Century European Art

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New York