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Queen Charlotte by Henry Edridge, circa 1795


Charlotte Sophia of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, wife of George III, patron of the arts and botanist who helped expand Kew Gardens
Watercolour on card, in verre eglomise border and gilded wood frame
Rectangular, 5 1/4 inches
Charlotte married George III of England in 1761. She sat to Lawrence in the autumn of 1789, but did so unwillingly, having recently undergone the shock of George III's first attack of apparent insanity. Lawrence's portrait clearly inspired in terms of composition and costume.
Edridge's first portraits were on ivory, and he subsequently turned to paper with black lead and India ink to which he added very ornate backgrounds, but he later produced a large number of elaborately finished pictures in water colours with light backgrounds. His subjects included Lord Nelson, the explorer Mungo Park, the Methodist missionary Thomas Coke, and the Prime Minister Pitt
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