Lord Bertie of Thame was British Ambassador to France from 1905–1918. A lively account of his colourful career is given by Lady Cynthia Gladwyn in her book The Paris Embassy, London (1976).
This large pastel by Lucie Lambert of Lord Bertie in the Robes of Bath, dated 1911, was presumably executed in Paris. Lord Bertie left the portrait to his niece, who married Lord FitzAlan. Subsequently, Lady FitzAlan, who died in 1938, left the portrait to her husband, who finally presented it to the Foreign Office and it was accepted by Sir Alexander Cadogan on June 10th 1941. The portrait was stored in London for the rest of the Second World War and was eventually sent to Paris in January 1948.
Lucie Lambert was born Lucie Zoe Betty de Rothschild, the daughter of Baron Gustave Salomon James de Rothschild (1829–1911) of Paris and his wife Cecilie Anspach (1840–1912). She married Baron Leon Lambert (1841–1919), a banker in Brussels, in 1882. She is mentioned briefly as ‘Mme Lambert’ twice in Lord Bertie's diaries which he kept from 1914–18 in Paris; there is however no reference to the portrait.
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