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    This splendid full length 1600-1603 portrait of Anne Russell, Lady Herbert, later Countess of Worcester comes up at Sotheby’s sale of Old Master paintings in London on May 2.

    It represents some of the most extravagant court fashion worn during the final years of Elizabeth I’s reign. Anne is portrayed in the costume associated with Elizabeth’s maids of honour, such as the head-dress composed of silver wire and pearls.

    Anne Russell was the younger daughter of Lord John Russell (d. 1584) and Elizabeth Cooke (circa 1528-1609). She went to court as one of Queen Elizabeth I’s last maids of honour in 1594, and on 16 June 1600 the Queen honoured Anne and Henry Somerset, Lord Herbert, later 5th Earl & 1st Marquess of Worcester (1577-1646), by attending their marriage, one of the last dynastic unions of Tudor England.

    The work was reproduced in Peter Somerville-Large’s  The Irish Country House, a social history as hanging in the galleried hall at Kilcooley Abbey, Thurles, Co. Tipperary. Estimated at £80,000-120,000 it was in the collection of Sir William Barker, 4th Bt. (d. 1818) at Kilcooley Abbey.  It passed by descent within the Ponsonby Barker family at Kilcooley Abbey and was with the Weiss Gallery in London in 2004.  It is described by Sotheby’s as the property of a European private collector.

    UPDATE: THIS MADE £297,000

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