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After Elias Küsel (active 1653-64)

Charles II 1660

Engraving | 71.3 x 46.9 cm (sheet of paper) | RCIN 602638

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  • An engraving of Charles II as king: full-length, facing right, mounted on a rearing horse. He  wears armour, a plain collar, and a sash over his right shoulder. He holds a baton in his right hand. In the background is a view of ships and a land battle. With a French inscription below.

    This was among the first images of Charles II as de facto king. It was probably produced in Paris, with the French inscription referring to Charles's familial connections to the French royal house through his mother, Henrietta Maria, sister of Louis XIV. The print was a reworking of a portrait of Oliver Cromwell, engraved by Elias Küsel, and published by Balthasar Moncoronet and Jean van Merlen in Paris during the Commonwealth period. The likeness of the young monarch was probably re-engraved by Jean Frosne, who collaborated with Moncoronet on a bust-length print of Charles (RCIN 602374), also published in 1660. It is likely that the new version was instigated by Moncoronet, since only his name as a publisher appears. Küsel's name as engraver has been erased, with the tail of Charles's horse extended to mask the erasure.

    Text adapted from Charles II: Art & Power, London, 2017
    Provenance

    Possibly purchased by George IV when Prince Regent, in 1812 for £2 12s 6d (RA GEO/MAIN/27889) 'Charles 2d on horseback, rare'

  • Medium and techniques

    Engraving

    Measurements

    71.3 x 46.9 cm (sheet of paper)

    62.8 x 43.1 cm (platemark)

    59.8 x 42.6 cm (image)

  • Category
    Object type(s)
  • Alternative title(s)

    CHARLES STOVART II.e DV NOM ROY D ANGLETERRE ESCOSSE ET IRLANDE