Oil on canvas, 101.5 cm x 74.5 cm. Captioned: ‘Brownlow Earl Exeter’. Signed and dated: Angelica Kauffmann fecit at aua Napolina/Ao 1764.
The 9th Earl commissioned this portrait in Naples in 1764, whilst on his first Grand Tour.
He had just met the highly talented young Swiss artist and would become one of her principal patrons.
Four years later, in 1768, she was one of only two female artists amongst the thirty four founder members of the Royal Academy.
The portrait was bequeathed to the earl’s sister, Lady Elizabeth Chaplin and remained in the Chaplin family until 1972, when it was sold.
Happily, when offered for sale once again in 2003, it was acquired by the Burghley House Preservation Trust.