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Philip Tennyson Cole (1862?-1939)

King Edward VII (1841-1910) c.1906-7

Oil on canvas | 91.7 x 61.3 cm (support, canvas/panel/str external) | RCIN 406712

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  • Probably a study for the full-length portrait of King Edward VII presented to the sitter by the Liverpool Chamber of Commerce in 1908 and exhibited at the Royal Academy in the same year (257). The portrait is no longer in the Royal Collection. A close version, painted 1907, is in the Russell-Coates Art Gallery and another, with the throne to the left hand side, dated c. 1908, is in the Walker Art Gallery. A further version of the King seated in an armchair in Garter robes, dated 1907, is in the National Portrait Gallery (see RCIN 606266). Early requests in December 1906 for a sitting by the King were declined, however sittings at Buckingham Palace were reported in the Court Circular, taking place on Monday 1 July 1907 and Monday 28 September 1907. On Friday 21 February 1908, Sir Alfred Jones, on behalf of the Chamber of Commerce of Liverpool, presented a large full-length portrait of Edward VII to the King, which he was pleased to accept. Tennyson Cole attended the ceremony. The King stands, facing half to the right, his left foot raised on a dais, wearing Garter robes, the Garter Collar and Great George; the King of Kandy’s Throne appears in the right background. Archive records reveal that during the reign of Edward VII the Ivory Throne Chair from Travancore (RCIN 1561) was sent to London, and the King of Kandy’s Chair replaced it in the Throne Room in Windsor Castle. This ornate silver-gilt chair, with supporting dragons, was part of the regalia of the Kings of Kandy (now Sri Lanka). It was captured, together with the crown, after the Kandyan rebellion in 1815 and sent to England for the acceptance of the Prince Regent, later George IV; in 1934 both crown and throne were restored to Sri Lanka (then Ceylon).

    First recorded in Buckingham Palace in the present reign

  • Medium and techniques

    Oil on canvas


    91.7 x 61.3 cm (support, canvas/panel/str external)

    120.2 x 89.5 cm (frame, external)