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George III and Queen Charlotte

Patronage, Collecting and Court Taste

Jane Roberts

 408 pages

Cover for George III and Queen Charlotte

Cover for George III and Queen Charlotte ©

ISBN 978 1 902163 73 4

Please note, due to the publication date this catalogue may contain outdated terminology. Updated object records can be viewed on Collection Online.

The 'madness' of George III is the one fact about the king that everybody knows. Some might also say that George III ‘lost’ the American colonies. Few would be able to add that George III founded the Royal Academy of Arts, that he was a patron of Samuel Johnson and the astronomer William Herschel, a king who ‘gloried in the name of Briton’, and that amongst his contemporaries George III was noted as an outstanding bibliophile and a renowned connoisseur of music, science, painting and architecture.

The biographies by John Brooke’s and Christopher Hibbert inspired a greater curiosity about George III, as have Alan Bennett’s dramatic works. The distinct artistic concerns of George III’s consort, Queen Charlotte, and those of their twelve surviving children, have also begun to be studied with greater interest.

Published to coincide with the major exhibition at The Queen's Gallery, Buckingham Palace, George III and Queen Charlotte: Patronage, Collecting and Court Taste reconsiders the role of George III, Queen Charlotte and their family in encouraging the arts within the court and society as a whole during the 50 years of the king's reign.

Illustrated by a superb range of works of art in the Royal Collection, the book reveals aspects of George III as a father, monarch and man of letters that have generally been overlooked, and demonstrates his true importance as one of the most wide-ranging, influential and far-sighted collectors of his day. It is an important contribution to studies of the fine and decorative arts in the Georgian period, and will be an essential source of reference for both academics and collectors.

Lady Jane Roberts was the Royal Librarian from 2002 until her retirement in 2013. 

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Highlights from the Publication

William Vile (c.1700–67)


Alexander Cumming (1733-1814)

Barometrical Clock

Matthew Boulton (1728-1809)

Candle and perfume vase

Attributed to Pietro da Cortona (Cortona 1596-Rome 1669)

The trophy of Marius: front view

William Vile (c.1700–67)

Jewel cabinet

Louis-François Roubiliac (1702-62)

George Frederick Handel, (1685-1759)

Sir Anthony van Dyck (1599-1641)

The Five Eldest Children of Charles I

Charles Cressent (1685-1768)

Longcase equation clock