Richard Cosway, R.A., An important portrait of George IV, as Prince of Wales (1762-1830), wearing fancy dress ('Prince Florizel' costume), comprising yellow-trimmed white doublet over a white shirt with high collar, red cloak with the blue ribbon and star of the Garter and black broad-brimmed hat trimmed with white plumes, his hair powdered
Lot 131
Richard Cosway, R.A., An important portrait of George IV, as Prince of Wales (1762-1830), wearing fancy dress ('Prince Florizel' costume), comprising yellow-trimmed white doublet over a white shirt with high collar, red cloak with the blue ribbon and star of the Garter and black broad-brimmed hat trimmed with white plumes, his hair powdered
Sold for £25,095 (US$ 39,580) inc. premium

Lot Details
Richard Cosway, R.A. (British, 1742-1821)
An important portrait of George IV, as Prince of Wales (1762-1830), wearing fancy dress ('Prince Florizel' costume), comprising yellow-trimmed white doublet over a white shirt with high collar, red cloak with the blue ribbon and star of the Garter and black broad-brimmed hat trimmed with white plumes, his hair powdered
glazed (unframed), the reverse inscribed with the number 5, and George the/ Fourth/ by Cosway
Oval, 70mm. (2 3/4ins.) high ,
Provenance: J.L.Propert Collection
Pierpont Morgan Collection; Christie's, 24 June, 1935, no.247 (illustrated)
Exhibited: Burlington Fine Arts Club, 1889, property of J.Lumsden Propert, Esq.
Literature: The Connoisseur, May, 1907
G.C. Williamson, Catalogue of the Pierpont Morgan Collection, 1906, Vol. II, No.264, colour plate 41, described and illustrated (see lot 1)

Footnotes

  • Richard Cosway began his long working relationship with the Prince of Wales in 1765, when the Prince was just a baby. By 1785, close to the date of the present lot, Cosway describes himself as Principal Painter to the Prince.
    The present lot belongs to a group of portraits of George, painted by Cosway from 1785, of the Prince in fancy dress. These head and shoulder portraits stem from the full-length drawing produced by Cosway circa 1785 (later engraved by L. Sailliar in 1787).
    In 1785, George (illegally) married Maria Fitzherbert. This new relationship heralds a flurry of portraits of the Prince in elaborate dress, although as early as 1782 George's friend the Duchess of Devonshire admitted that the Prince of Wales 'is fond of dress even to a tawdry degree' and that 'his person, his dress and the admiration he has met... from women take up his thoughts chiefly'.
    The present lot was originally housed in a diamond frame (illustrated in Williamson's catalogue of the Pierpont Morgan Collection - see lot 1) and may have been intended as a gift to a friend or admirer.
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