A Portrait of John, 5th Earl of Exeter (1648-1700), by Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt. (1646-1723).

Oil on canvas, 124.5cm by 99cm. Signed ‘G K fecit’.

The 5th Earl undertook the Grand Tour on four occasions, on three of which he was accompanied by his wife Anne, daughter of the 3rd Earl and Countess of Devonshire.

He and their great grandson, Brownlow, 9th Earl (1725-1793), were the two great collectors at Burghley. See PIC083 & PIC781.

The 1738 Burghley Inventory erroneously records it as being by Sir Anthony van Dyck (1599-1641).

The 1763 Burghley Inventory records, in Brownlow, the 9th Earl’s distinctive hand: ‘the brown dining room ..John ye 5th Earl of Exeter by Sir Godfrey Kneller.’


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