QUEEN ELIZABETH I
After the original oil on board. Third Qtr 16th Century.
Mouse-over for close-up. Mouse-wheel
A typically flattering portrait of the queen from the
middle years of
The original painting (oil on board) shows considerable splitting
and some old and very clumsy restoration and repainting, evidence of
which has now been eliminated or reduced as far as possible. Additionally, the queen's eyes
(corrected to that of a contemporary
written text, namely "dark amber-brown") and her splendid array of gold mounted rubies,
emeralds and sapphires has been corrected back to true colours.
Several missing or over-painted elements have been reconstructed from other parts of the
original image. Multiple references to her many costumes all indicate a
variety of jewels symmetrically placed, yet the surviving
original shows jewels only of a very dark, blackish red-brown colour. No references
were found in respect of the gold mounted jet medallion nor
the velvet ribbon to which it is attached, so the colour of the ribbon has been
left dark green as survives today, but there is good reason to believe
that this would originally have been deep blue, an ancient symbol of purity.
The entirely red rose could suggest that this painting
was originally for a descendant of the House of Lancaster - a Tudor Rose
was red (Lancastrian) with a white (Yorkist) centre. It is not clear
whether the rose is mounted with a green leaf (now quite black) or a black
feather. A leaf would have no symbolism but a black
feather would possibly have represented a phoenix for rebirth and longevity.
However, Elizabeth's favoured avian
symbol was a pelican to represent her "motherhood" for the
Any further, informed opinion regarding her attire would be welcomed.
This image is best mounted in a deep, ornate gilt
frame. If required and to
assist with framing, it can be printed with a broad, black
surround or sized to fit your existing frame.
An entertainment could be made by asking house-guests to
spot the "deliberate mistake" in this image.