A Portrait of Elizabeth, wife of William, 2nd Earl of Exeter (1566-1640), English School, circa 1650.

Oil on canvas, in a painted oval, 74.9cm by 61cm.

Elizabeth Drury (1578-1654), was the daughter of Sir William Drury (1550-1590) of Hawstead Place, Suffolk and the 2nd Earl’s second wife.

There were three daughters from the marriage, Elizabeth, Countess of Berkshire and twins Diana and Anne; the former, firstly Countess of Oxford and then Countess of Elgin; the latter, Countess of Stamford.

There was no son, and on the 2nd Earl’s death, the title passed to his nephew, David who thus became 3rd Earl of Exeter.

The countess, who appears here in later life, about four years before her death, is dressed as a widow.

She is also the subject of another portrait at Burghley, circle of Joan Carlisle, PIC098, which shows her as a young woman.


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