Richard Cosway R.A., George IV (1762-1830), as Prince of Wales, wearing white coat, black stock, whi
Lot 99
Richard Cosway R.A., George IV (1762-1830), as Prince of Wales, wearing white coat, black stock, white lace cravat, red and white striped sash and breast star of the Austrian Military Order of Maria Theresa, his hair powdered
Sold for £33,460 (US$ 53,704) inc. premium

Lot Details
Richard Cosway R.A. (Okeford 1742 - London 1821)

Footnotes

  • The fact that the Prince is wearing the Order of Maria Theresa is unusual. The Order was founded by the Empress Maria Theresa on 22 June 1757 as a reward for merit by senior military officers. The order was granted as a reward for acts of military valor and to perpetuate the memory of the brave officers receiving it. An officer had to command in a battle or a unit in a winning action to be eligible for the higher grades, and even Oberlieutenants had to perform prodigious feats of duty and valor to receive the knight's cross. As the British Prince of Wales certainly did not fullfill these requirements, one must assume that he was awarded the Order by the ruler of Austria, Francis I in a purely honourary capacity. It was possibly given to the Prince in celebration of his marriage to Caroline of Brunswick the same year in which the present lot was painted. If this was the case, then it is probable that the present lot was painted for George to send back to Austria in order to show his gratitude. This is enhanced by the fact that he has dressed himself in the guise of an Austrian Military hero, by wearing a white coat, a reflection of the uniform of the Austrian army.
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