Bridgewater Titians

Philip II, King of Spain (1527-1598)Philip II, King of Spain (1527-1598) Perseus & AndromedaPerseus & Andromeda Queen Elizabeth I as Diana and Pope Gregory XIII as CallistoQueen Elizabeth I as Diana and Pope Gregory XIII as Callisto Charles I, 1600 - 1649. Reigned 1625 - 1649Charles I, 1600 - 1649. Reigned 1625 - 1649 Diana and Callisto, by Peter Paul Rubens, after TitianDiana and Callisto, by Peter Paul Rubens, after Titian Philippe, Duke of Orléans, 1674 - 1723. Regent of FrancePhilippe, Duke of Orléans, 1674 - 1723. Regent of France Bridgewater House Gallery, 1900Bridgewater House Gallery, 1900 Titians at the National Gallery of ScotlandTitians at the National Gallery of Scotland Girl Holding Her FootGirl Holding Her Foot SabineSabine

Bridgewater House Gallery, 1900

Paintings Come to Britain

When the Orléans collection was put on display in London, it had a profound impact on British artists and art lovers. The English writer and painter William Hazlitt (1778-1830) wrote ‘I was staggered when I saw the works ... A new sense came upon me, a new heaven and a new Earth stood before me.’ Francis Egerton (3rd Duke of Bridgewater) purchased Titian’s two Diana paintings as well as a number of the other old master pictures that have defined the Bridgewater collection as one of the finest in the world. Some of these spectacular paintings form part of the current Bridgewater loan to the National Galleries of Scotland. When Francis Egerton died childless in 1803, the collection passed to his nephew George Leveson-Gower, 2nd Marquess of Stafford (later 1st Duke of Sutherland), and then by inheritance to Francis Egerton, 1st Earl of Ellesmere (1800-1857). In 1847 the Earl began to build Bridgewater House in London, where he had a large gallery constructed to display his great-uncle’s fine collection of paintings.

© Reproduced by permission of English Heritage NMR
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  • © Reproduced by permission of English Heritage NMR

Additional Information

Some of the other paintings in the sale that make up the Bridgewater collection were also purchased at this sale and are on loan to the National Galleries of Scotland. They include Raphael’s Virgin and Child (‘The Bridgewater Madonna’) NGL 065.46, Poussin’s Seven Sacraments, NGL 067.46 G , and Titian’s Three Ages of Man, NGL 068.46.