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Portraits of Two Young Englishmen
Style of Anthony van Dyck
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Two young men in fashionable clothing look into the distance as they lean against a plinth. This double portrait has traditionally been considered to be by Anthony van Dyck, but this is now doubted. Though it reflects the style of the artist in the 1630s, it could have been painted by a follower working in his style or from a lost original or workshop design during the 1640s or 1650s (Van Dyck died in 1641).

The sitters have in the past been identified as Lords John and Bernard Stuart, the youngest sons of Esmé Stuart, 3rd Duke of Lennox. But the men depicted here bear little resemblance to known portraits of the brothers, such as Van Dyck’s own Lord John Stuart and his Brother, Lord Bernard Stuart (also in the National Gallery’s collection). Van Dyck’s portrait may well be the model for this work: the colour palette is similar, as is the austere setting, the attitude of the poses and the pairing of two sitters who appear to be related.

Key facts
Artist Style of Anthony van Dyck
Artist dates 1599 - 1641
Full title Portraits of Two Young Englishmen
Date made about 1635-40
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 193.7 x 126 cm
Acquisition credit Bought, 1922
Inventory number NG3605
Location in Gallery Room 20
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