Edward Robert Smythe (British, 1810-1899) "Wool Pit Fair, Portrait of Mr R E Lofft Esq, etc"
Lot 310
Edward Robert Smythe (British, 1810-1899) "Wool Pit Fair, Portrait of Mr R E Lofft Esq, etc"
Sold for £39,650 (US$ 66,581) inc. premium
Lot Details
Edward Robert Smythe (British, 1810-1899)
"Wool Pit Fair, Portrait of Mr R E Lofft Esq, etc"
signed 'E R Smythe' (lower right), oil on canvas
91.5 x 183cm (36 x 72 1/16in)


  • It it likely that this painting was commissioned by Robert Edwyn Lofft (1831-1900) in 1881, to celebrate his appointment that year as High Sheriff of Suffolk.

    A note to the reverse reads:
    'Key To Picture
    Given to W. N. L. Champion by H. H. Prince Fredk. Duleep Singh on February 6th 1907 and supplied to the Prince by Mr Lofft himself.
    1 The bay mare on the left (spectator's left) was well known but he could not remember the name.
    2 The Suffolk stallion in centre was Mr Loffts 'Cup-beard'
    3 The two figures are (a) seated with white helmet Mr R. C. Lofft. (B) standing - Smyth (sic), the artist.
    4 The small dark brown (or black) stallion was the Hungarian he imported and crossed with Suffolk named 'Gidrain'
    5 The horse with saddle was the well known hunter which belonged to 'Parson Barker'.
    6 The thoroughbred to the right named 'Countess'.
    7 The Black Irish Cob was a well known jumper.

    Commissioned by Mr Robert Emelyn Lofft of Troston Hall, Nr. Bury St Edmunds. Thence to H. H. Prince Fredrick Duleep Singh of Blo Norton Hall, Nr. Thetford. Given by him to W. N. L. Champion of Riddlesworth Hall, Nr. Theford. Purchased by the Le Grys family at the Riddlesworth Hall Sale, Messrs. Lacey N. Gooding & Sons, Abbeygate Street, Bury St Edmunds, 2nd August 1966, lot 267.

    Oscar & Peter Johnson, Lowndes Gallery 1972 exhibition: 'Henry Bright & The Smythes of Ipswich' No. 37.

Saleroom notices

  • The Suffolk stallion identified as 'Cup-Beard' in the catalogue footnote (no. 2) has been positively identified as 'Cup-Bearer' The 1880 Suffolk Horse Stud Book notes... '...Mr Lofft is another West Suffolk breeder of Suffolk horses. The Troston Hall Stud - seven miles north-east of Bury St.Edmunds - is one of the largest in the county, standing I believe, in point of numbers, next to Mr Wolton's, of Butley Abbey. During the last twelve or fourteen years, Mr Lofft has been a purchaser at nearly all the principle Suffolk sales. He bought mares at Mr Crisp's of Butley Abbey, Mr Wolton's, of Newbolt Hall, and Mr Frost's at Wherstead. Those of his own breeding are chiefly by his 'Cup-Bearer' (842), a horse that was sold as a yealing at the second sale of Mr Crisp - September 1870. The young Cup-Bearer was out of the mare which Mr Lofft bought at the same sale the same day. (p.686) There are further mentions of the 'Cup-Bearer' most notably p.61: 'Mr Lofft's 'Cup-Bearer' (842) is better known in West Suffolk. He won first prize at the Attleborough meeting of the Norfolk Society in 1873, and was second at Woodbridge that year...Sold at the Butley sale in 1870, to Mrs Anness, of Brockford Hall who showd him at Beccles in 1871, as young Butley 23. He was then bought by Mr Grout (Groton), and afterwards , re-sold to Mr Lofft, who won the first prize with him at the Norfolk Show at Thetford in 1873. He was scond in Woodbridge the same year and was shown at Ipswich in 1874, Stowmarket in 1875, and was the reserve number at Sudbury in 1876. He as shown at the Royal at Bedford in 1874. A large heavy short-legged horse, very dark in colour. The Suffolk Punch Heavy Horse Museum holds three related pictures: A portrait of Cup-Bearer II by John Duvall dated 1876, a portrait of Cup-Bearer by Edith Corbet, 1872, and a portrait of Cup Bearer III by John Duvall.
  1. Daniel Wright
    Specialist - Pictures
    21 Churchgate Street
    Bury St Edmunds, IP33 1RG
    United Kingdom
    Work +44 1284 716 195
    FaxFax: +44 1284 755 844
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