Miniature Paintings

The Portland Collection is known for its superb range of miniature paintings, dating back to Tudor period, sixteenth century, and including works by Hans Holbein and Nicholas Hilliard. The Collection is described by Vanessa Remington, Senior Curator at The Royal Collection, as “probably second only to the Royal Collection”.

Family collectors include John Holles and Edward Harley and continues through to the 6th Duke of Portland.

The 5th Duke of Portland (1800 – 1879) was one of a trio of major 19th century British collectors in this field. Miniatures were popular across Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries and were usually intimate and informal portraits painted by specialist artists for rich patrons – who often gave them as love tokens. Despite his reputation as a recluse who avoided the outside world, research by Remington shows a Duke who was nevertheless fascinated by youth, beauty, celebrities and high society.

The miniature display changes every six months.