Portrait of Sir William Cecil, Lord Burghley (1520-1598)

ca. 1800-20 (made)

George Perfect Harding

Height: 45 mm sight size, oval, Width: 37 mm sight size, oval

E.1175-1988 PDP

Portrait miniature on vellum by George Perfect Harding depicting Sir William Cecil, Lord Burghley (1520-1598). Great Britain, ca. 1800-20.

Watercolour on vellum, stuck onto playing card with black cypher verso. Lord Burghley is depicted facing left in a black doublet, trimmed with brown fur, wearing a black soft, high-crowned hat with a blue ribbon with the Badge of the Garter. He has a fair moustache and beard, against a blue background with gold border.

Item Provenance: The Rev. Bentinck Hawkins Collection. Sir Charles Wentworth Silke, Bt. Lord Harcourt (purchased in 1911). This miniature is one of a group of ten originally displayed in two frames. Nine of the group were acquired by the V&A (E.1170-1178-1988), while the tenth of Mary Sidney, Countess of Pembroke by Nicholas Hilliard is now held by the National Portrait Gallery, London. The complex provenance of this group is described in an article by Sir Roy Strong, "The Leicester House Miniatures", Burlington Magazine CXXVII, October 1988. However, this miniature and E.1176-1988 were only added to the group early 20th century and are not referred to by Strong. George Perfect Harding visited many country houses making copies after earlier portraits. A known portrait of William Cecil, Lord Burghley (Erna Auberach, Hilliard, p.269, pl. 236) is similar.

Location: In Storage

View this object on the V&A website