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    Description

    GEORGE ROMNEY (British 1734 - 1802)
    Portrait of a Lady, said to be Dorothy Cavendish Bentinck, Duchess of Portland (1750-1794), circa 1774
    Oil on canvas
    30 x 25 inches
    On the reverse, two old, typewritten gallery labels that state the painting came from the Wentworth Castle Collection and was exhibited at Leeds in 1868.

    PROVENANCE:
    Sir William Henry Cavendish Bentinck, 4th Earl and 3rd Duke of Portland (1738-1809);
    Acquired by descent;
    Frederick W. T. Vernon Wentworth (1795-1885), Wentworth Castle, Yorkshire;
    Acquired by descent;
    Newhouse Galleries, New York, NY;
    Mr. and Mrs. F. Howard Walsh, Fort Worth, Texas, 1970;
    Walsh Family Art Trust

    REFERENCES:
    Humphrey Ward and W. Roberts, Romney: A Biographical and Critical Essay with a Catalogue Raisonné of His Works, vol. 2 (London, 1904), p. 125.
    National Exhibition of Works of Art, exh. cat. (Leeds, 1868), no. 1055.

    EXHIBITED:
    London, "National Portrait Exhibition", 1867, no. 581.
    Leeds, "National Exhibition of Works of Art", 1868, no. 1055.


    With masterful attention to detail, this portrayal of Lady Dorothy, Duchess of Portland, is one of the finest examples of Romney's elegant portrait style. Due to the very good condition of the painting, the viewer can easily appreciate the tender features of the lady's face and the brilliant tactility of her dress. Elements of her costume, particularly the golden yellow accents on her dress, have been delicately applied with the artist's characteristic virtuosity. Around the right side of her head and along the left outline of her figure is a glowing light, which subtly echoes the touches of gold in her dress.

    The wife of William Henry Cavendish Bentinck, 4th Earl and 3rd Duke of Portland (1738-1809), Lady Dorothy was the only daughter of the 4th Duke of Devonshire. Her husband was a prominent political figure who served in several offices, most notably as Prime Minister of England in 1783 and again in 1807-09. Romney painted the Duke's portrait in 1794-95 and although there is no mention of the Duchess in his diary, there is an entry in one of Thomas Greene's accounts, dated April 6, 1774: "Received of the Duchess of Portland, £10 10s." Ward and Roberts speculate that this payment may be in reference to a painting (see Literature above), which may now possibly be identified as the present portrait.



    Condition Report*: Condition report available upon request.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

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    Auction Dates
    November, 2006
    9th-10th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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