Oil on canvas, 120.7cm by 185.4cm. Inscribed with the identity of the sitters.
The 1763 Burghley Inventory records: ‘The Marble hall …John ye 4th Earl of Exeter, Mr David Cecil & Lady Scudamore 7.’
The children were, in fact, the sons and daughter of John, 4th Earl of Exeter (1628-1678).
Jacob, also known as Jacques, d’Agar, was born in France.
Originally a history painter, he changed to portraiture, and was very successful, becoming painter to the King and Court.
However, as a Protestant, he decided to leave France in 1682, with his son Charles, who was also a portrait painter.
He painted several members of the English nobility and was also invited to the Danish Court where he was much patronised by King Christian V.