National Gallery of Canada / Musée des beaux-arts du Canada

Bulletin 17, 1971

Annual Index
Author & Subject

Chandos, Marlborough and Kneller: 
Painting and "Protest" in the Age of Queen Anne

by Douglas Stewart

Pages 1  |  2  |  3  |  4 


1 See R. H. Hubbard, ed., The National Gallery of Canada Catalogue of Paintings and Sculpture, Volume I: Older Schools (Ottawa, 1957, rpt. 1961), p. 115. The picture was acquired from the collection of a descendant of Chandos, Lord Henniker, Thornham Hall, Suffolk, in 1937. The catalogue entry contains the references to it in the earlier literature and exhibitions. There is an apparently original addition of a ten-inch strip of canvas at the bottom.

2 For the latest account of the rebuilding of Cannons, which began in 1713, see Kerry Downes, English Baroque Architecture (London: Zwemmer, 1966), pp. 87-88. The architects successively employed were William Talman, John James and James Gibbs, but according to Downes, the fronts as constructed were essentially the work of the latter.

3 I am very grateful to my colleague Mr. Pierre du Prey for the information, not generally known, about the present whereabouts of the staircase. (It is sometimes said to have been destroyed in London during World War II). According to Mr. Morrison Hecksher of the Metropolitan Museum, the iron work is probably by Jean Montigny.

For the Chapel - probably designed by Gibbs - which also contains contemporary paintings and stained glass, see F. J. B. Watson, "A Venetian Settecento Chapel in the English Countryside", Arte Veneta, vol. VIII (1954), pp. 295-302.

There is a monument to the Duke and his first two wives in the church of St. Lawrence, Whitchurch (Edgware Road), a very grand affair with three figures, by Grinling Gibbons. See David Green, Grinling Gibbons (London: Country Life, 1964), pp. 167-69, pl. 246.

4 C. H. Collins Baker and Muriel I. Baker, The Life and Circumstances of James Brydges, First Duke of Chandos, Patron of the Liberal Arts (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1949), p. 83 (hereinafter referred to as Collins Baker). For a review of this, with additional material on Cannons and the Duke's other architectural projects, see H. Colvin, "Princely Chandos", The Listener, vol. XLII (1949), p. 732.

I am very grateful to the editor, Mr. Myron Laskin, Jr., for this last reference and for other helpful suggestions with this article.

5 The Poussin was in the Chandos sale, 7 May 1747, at Cock's, London, lot 119. See Anthony Blunt, The Paintings of Nicolas Poussin: Critical Catalogue (London: Phaidon Press, 1966), no.159. A miniature copy is referred to in note 6 below.

6 The picture is referred to in two letters of 1713 from the Duke to the artist that are preserved among the Chandos papers at the Huntington Library, San Marino, California (HM ST 57, pp. 225, 281). In the first, dated 15 October, the Duke writes: "I shd be glad if ye frame for my wife's picture cd be finished & ye picture Set in it & cas'd up that Mr Zollicoffre [Chandos's secretary) might have it to send down into ye Country. As also ye family picture, wch you gave me hopes shd be finished last week." By December the picture was probably finished since on the 7th Chandos informed Kneller that "I have Sent to Mr Lence' for ye Pictures he has made from ye family piece." "Mr Lence" is doubtless Bernard Lens, the miniaturist (1682-1740), who was revolutionizing the practice of miniature painting in England at this time by the use of ivory. His miniature copy of the Poussin Choice of Hercules that belonged to Chandos (see note 5 above) is known. See Graham Reynolds, English Portrait Miniatures, Library of English Art Series (London: A. C. Black, 1952), p. 107. Presumably it was commissioned by the Duke. 

I am very grateful to Miss Anne Caiger, Assistant Archivist in the Manuscript Department of the Huntington Library, for her patience, kindness and knowledge in answering my enquiries concerning the Chandos papers, and to the Librarian, Mr. Robert Dougan, for granting me permission to cite from them.

7 See British Museum, Catalogue of British Drawings, vol. I: XVI & XVII Centuries, text by E. Croft-Murray and Paul Hulton (London, 1960), p. 215, no. For the complex problem of identifying Byng, one of Kneller's last pupils, and the various hands in the Byng sketch books, see especially pp. 204-07.

8 George Vertue, Note Books, Vol. II, Walpole Society, vol. 20 (Oxford University Press, 1932), p. 80.

9 See Philippe Ariès, Centuries of Childhood: a Social History of Family Life, trans. by Robert Baldick (New York: Knopf, 1962), Ch. III, passim. I am indebted to Dr. Paul Christianson for this reference.
The two Chandos boys are tragic witnesses to the terrible level of child mortality in the eighteenth century. John (1703-27) was the Duke's fourth son but the first to survive, while Henry (1708-71), the sixth and youngest son, was the only one to live to maturity. Nor was Cassandra Chandos' last wife. She died in 1735. The following year the Duke married his last Duchess, Lydia, who outlived him, dying in 1750. See G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage (London: St. Catherine Press, 1910-59).

10. The Spectator, introd. and notes by G. A. Aitken (London: John C. Nimmo, and New York: Longmans Green, 1898), vol. 2, p. 12 (issue no. 83, Tuesday 5 June 1711).

11. Collins Baker, p. xiv.

12. For a portrait of John, 2nd Duke of Rutland (d. 1721), in the collection of the Countess of Gainsborough. The portrait is inscribed as being of the 1st Duke, who died in 1711, but variants at Belvoir and in the collection of Dr. G. E. Finley, Kingston, Ont., in which the same head is used make it clear that this is incorrect.

13 This change in Kneller's style was probably partly the result of contact with the works of the two Venetian rococo painters, Marco Ricci and Gianantonio Pellegrini, who were brought to England in 1708 by the Earl of Manchester; see M. Whinney and O. Millar, English Art, 1625-1714 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1957), pp. 307-10. Pellegrini was one of the original members of the 1711 London Academy, of which Kneller was the first Governor; see G. Vertue, op. cit., p. 7 and Note Books, vol. VI, Walpole Society, vol. 30 (Oxford University Press, 1955), pp. 168-69.

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