Anthony van Dyck (1599 - 1641)
- Marie de Raet
- Southern Netherlands
- Oil on canvas
- Image size: 213.3 x 114.5 cm
Object size: 253 x 163 x 13 cm
- Inscription: 'ICI DOVL[EVR] LA HAVLT BONHEVR' Coat of arms shows, beneath an imperial coronet, De Raet quartered with Philippe Le Roy and the motto above.
Inscription: 'AET.SVAE 16.A°.1631'
- Great Gallery
- Long acknowledged as two of Van Dyck’s greatest works, these paintings
are the finest portraits of his second Antwerp period (1627 – 32). Philippe
Le Roy (1596 – 1679) was the grandson of a successful Antwerp gunpowder
manufacture and his financial acumen allowed him to rise in the world. In 1631, he married Marie de Raet (1614 – 62), the sixteen-year-old daughter of
François de Raet, almoner of Antwerp.
Le Roy probably commissioned this pair of portraits from Van Dyck to mark this union, his own portrait celebrating his betrothal to Marie de Raet in 1630. By commissioning an expensive, full-length portrait, the sitter made clear from the outset his wish to be portrayed in the grand manner. Van Dyck succeeded triumphantly in creating an image which matched Le Roy’s grand ambition, whilst embodying contemporary courtly ideals.
The painting is one of the few works to which Van Dyck added his
signature. Marie de Raet was painted the following year to celebrate the
couple’s marriage. She is depicted in the trappings of nobility, embodying
her new husband’s wealth and taste, and is all the more charming for her
air of innocence and vulnerability, which shines through the pomp.
The portraits were acquired by the 4th Marquess in 1850.