Sir Godfrey Kneller

Philip, 4th Lord Wharton

1685

Medium
Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions
Unconfirmed: 2286 x 1448 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Presented by Tate Members 2005
Reference
T12029

Display caption

This man was a member of parliament for forty-six years. Strongly religious, he was a great believer in democracy and felt uncomfortable referring to the House of Commons as the ‘lower’ house. He wears his Parliamentary robes and, in a break with convention, sits comfortably rather than standing formally posed. Kneller was born in Germany, but trained in Amsterdam and studied in Italy before moving to England in 1676. Towards the end of the century, after the deaths of Peter Lely and John Riley, Kneller became the leading portrait painter in Britain.

Gallery label, April 2007