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Hans Eworth (active 1540-died 1574)

Elizabeth I and the Three Goddesses 1569

RCIN 403446

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Elizabeth I, in the guise of Paris, is meant to choose the most beautiful of the three goddesses before her, but instead she retains the apple-shaped orb for herself. This is the only known portrait of Elizabeth I wearing gloves. She is known to have been particularly proud of her elegant hands and used gloves as a sign of favour, removing them to allow a courtier to kiss the royal hand or presenting them as gifts. The goddess Venus on the right has discarded her linen smock, the layer of clothing worn closest to the skin.