John Stone, wears a suit of armour and holds a baton in his right hand. His left hand rests on the helmet by his side. The same figure in armour was first used by painter Peter Lely for his portrait of Charles II, in the Royal Collection.
John Stone was born in 1626. He married Catherine Carleton, daughter of Sir John Carleton, first baronet and his wife Anne Hoghton. Stone served as MP for Wallingford, Oxfordshire, in 1679 and 1685.
This portrait and the pendant portrait of John’s wife, Catherine (see GAC 3720), were sold from the collection at Madingley Hall, Cambridgeshire, by Messrs Foster of Pall Mall in 1871, along with eight other Lely portraits from the collection of Sir John Cotton (1615-1689), Catherine’s half-brother. They included a portrait of George Garth of Morden, Surrey (private collection), the husband of Catherine and John’s sister, Anne (née Carleton), and the couple’s eldest son, Richard Garth (untraced). A 1660 Lely portrait of Sir John Cotton himself, depicted with his family, is now in Manchester City Art Gallery.
Today, Madingley Hall is owned by Cambridge University. It is home to the University's Institute of Continuing Education and used for conferences and events.
Peter Lely was born in Westphalia in Germany. He studied in Haarlem under Pieter de Grebber, becoming a Master of the Haarlem Guild in 1637. He relocated to England in 1641, where he succeeded Sir Antony Van Dyck as Principal Painter to Charles II. Lely presided over a large studio and employed several assistants. He frequently painted only the head of the sitter himself, before passing the work to an assistant to complete. The work of his assistants is often mistakenly attributed to Lely himself. He was knighted in 1680, shortly before his death that year. At the time of his death, over 100 canvases remained in his studio, many copies executed by assistants. His assistants also produced independent work in the style of their master.
bl: Jn.o Stone Esq:r of / Brightwell, Oxf:dsh / P. Lely Pinx.t / 1660
Collection at Madingley Hall, Cambridgeshire; probably by descent to Dame Maria Susanna King (died 1871; wife of Vice-Admiral Sir Richard King, died 1834; daughter of Admiral Sir Charles Cotton); sold through 'The Madingley Pictures' sale, Messrs Foster, Pall Mall, London, on 14 June 1871 (Lot 86), as 'Jno. Stone, Esq., of Brightwell, Oxfordshire'; 'The Property of a Gentleman'; by whom sold through Christie's, London, 'British and Foreign Historical Portraits' sale, on 19 November 1910 (Lot 94), for £89.5.0; from which sale purchased by 'Carlisle'; collection of politician, traveller and Viceroy of India George Nathaniel Curzon, Marquess Curzon of Kedleston (1859-1925) of 1 Carlton House Terrace, London; inherited by Grace Elvina Trilla Curzon (née Hinds), Marchioness Curzon of Kedleston (1877-1958); by whom sold through Christie's, London, on 10 July 1931 (Lot 128), for 84.0.0; from which sale purchased by 'Freeman'; with Leggatt Bros.; from whom purchased by the Ministry of Works in March 1957
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