The Elizabethan Image
Strong presents a detailed and authoritative examination of one of the most fascinating periods of British art. Enriching previous perceptions and ways of seeing the Elizabethans in their world, he reveals an age parallel in many ways to our own: a country aspiring professionally and changing socially. The gaze is from the inside, capturing the knights, melancholy lovers, poets (including Sidney, Donne, and Sir John Davies), court favourites, and their 'Gloriana', as they mirrored and made themselves.
Beginning with the great portrait of the Queen in a grand procession with her Garter Knights, Strong pinpoints the characters and key motifs that run through the rest of the book: chivalry, changes to the social order, emblems and imagery - the full richness of the Elizabethan imagination. These pictures were intimate - personal commissions by private individuals - and not necessarily for public view. As such they are a glimpse into private worlds and sentiments and speak eloquently for the people who paid for, painted, and lived amongst them.
Sir Roy Strong, historian, writer, and broadcaster, is a leading authority on Elizabethan portraiture. He was Director of the National Portrait Gallery, London from 1967-73, and The Victoria and Albert Museum from 1974-87.
- 224 pages
Significant portraits of Bess of Hardwick, Countess of Shrewsbury, and Henry Wriothesley, 3rd Earl of Southampton, feature in this publication and can be seen in our current exhibition Unseen Treasures.