A poet, courtier and statesman, Robert Kerr was created Earl of Ancram on the occasion of Charles I's Scottish coronation in 1633. A man of refined taste and great culture, Kerr was the first to bring works by Rembrandt to Britain. After Charles's execution in 1649, he went into exile and spent the last years of his life in poverty in Amsterdam. He nevertheless had at least a couple of portraits of himself painted there. At his death, Kerr's body was retained by his creditors for four months and only released for burial through the mediation of Cromwell.