A large mid 17th century (circa 1650) fine quality portrait of Sir Thomas Coventry (1578-1640) dressed in robes with the Great Seal, After an original by Cornelius Johnson (1593-1661), probably painted by a follower of Cornelius Johnson, possibly by Georg Geldorp - ADDITIONAL IMAGES CAN BE VIEWED BELOW:
Cornelius Johnson or (Cornelis Janssens van Ceulan) was born in England and trained in the Netherlands and became a painter in the Court of Charles 1st, he later left England and returned to The Hague in 1648.
He painted Sir Thomas Coventry various times, this painting would appear to be based on the earliest painting which dates from the early 1630’s, one of these paintings can be seen in The National Portrait Gallery.
This painting is possibly by Georg Geldorp, born in Antwerp in 1590’s and later settling in London where he was appointed keeper of pictures to Charles 1st where he was employed as a portrait painter, restorer and copyist and after Johnson left Geldorp continued his service to the King until 1658.
Thomas Coventry was a prominent lawyer, politician and Judge in the early 17th century, having studied at Oxford he entered the Inner Temple in 1594. He was promoted quickly due to his sharp mind and wit and by 1616 he was Recorder of London, by 1617 he was Solicitor General and became both MP for Droitwich and Attorney General in 1621.
However, it was his appointment to Lord Keeper of the Great Seal in 1625 and title of Baron Coventry of Aylesborough when he became one of the most powerful men in England.
He had power over much of the law of the land and was the person who had to deliver the reprimand to the House of Commons from Charles 1st – he disagreed with the King’s actions against Parliament and granted personal bail for 7 members of the House who were imprisoned and also lent the King £10000 in 1638.
This painting is in very good condition for age, has been relined, all in a gilt and ebonised 17th century style frame.
Oil on canvas: H: 50.25’’ / 127.5cm
W: 40’’ / 101.5cm
With frame: H: 57.25’’ / 145.5cm
W: 47’’ / 119.5cm
D: 3'' / 7.5cm
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