Marcus Gheeraerts II
Sir Henry Lee 1600

Artwork details

Marcus Gheeraerts II 1561 or 2–1636
Sir Henry Lee
Date 1600
Medium Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions Support: 1143 x 660 mm
frame: 1430 x 1170 x 85 mm
Lent from a private collection 2008
On long term loan
On display at Tate Britain
Room: 1540

Display caption

Sir Henry Lee (1533–1611) was a favourite courtier of Elizabeth I, appointed as Queen’s Champion and Master of the Armoury. He organised the annual Accession Day celebrations, turning them into large and spectacular public festivals in honour of the queen. Sir Henry commissioned portraits for his house at Ditchley in Oxfordshire, including the famous Ditchley portrait of Elizabeth I (now in the National Portrait Gallery). In 1597 he was created a Knight of the Garter, the highest chivalric order in England, and is shown here wearing its insignia: the Collar (gold chain) and George (jewelled medal of St George slaying the Dragon).

February 2016

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