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HM The Queen and King William view items in the Picture Gallery of Buckingham Palace

Items from the Royal Collection shown during the visit of King Willem-Alexander

The Dutch Gift

In 1660, Charles II was restored to the English throne. Having spent almost a decade in exile in the Spanish Netherlands (modern Belgium) and The Hague, he departed from Scheveningen in the Netherlands for London. After his departure, the Dutch people presented the new King with a gift ('the Dutch gift') of 24 Italian pictures and 12 sculptures to re-establish the Royal Collection. Some of these paintings are on display in the Picture Gallery at Buckingham Palace.

Included below is the inventory of Charles II’s pictures at Whitehall and Hampton Court, made in 1660-61 and noting specifically the ‘Dutch presents’. Among these and hanging in the Picture Gallery today is Titian’s Madonna and Child in a landscape with Tobias and the Angel, Charles II’s favourite picture from the gift.