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‘An Awful Deed’ by Robert Alexander Hillingford (1825-1904).

The painting – which depicts Oliver Cromwell contemplating Anthony van Dyck’s portrait of King Charles I – is signed by the artist and dated 1885. The subject is taken from a scene in Sir Walter Scott’s 1826 novel ‘Woodstock’ in which Oliver Cromwell surveys Anthony van Dyck’s famous portrait of the King whom Cromwell had sent to his death during the English Civil War. In the presence his daughter (and a terrified Royalist), Cromwell looks upon the painting and remarks that though the killing of the king had been “A stern necessity” it was nevertheless “an awful deed”.

Every painting we sell is offered in the very finest condition it can be for its age having just been professionally cleaned, conserved, and re-varnished. Clients should also note that fully insured, tracked, and signed for international shipping is complimentary.

Robert Alexander Hillingford was a highly successful Victorian painter of historical and literary scenes who became most famous for his portrayals of the Napoleonic Wars. Between 1864 and 1902 Hillingford exhibited 29 works at the Royal Academy, and numerous others the British Institution and the Royal Society of British Artists in London.

Dimensions: (framed) 94cm x 132cm (37” x 52”)

Dimensions: (canvas only) 76cm x 116cm (30” x 45½”)

Medium: Oil on canvas.

Provenance: Private UK collection.

Presentation: Newly commissioned bespoke gold metal leaf frame. All of the new frames we commission are especially made for us to order by one of the UK’s top period frame makers.

Condition: Very good. Newly professionally cleaned, restored, and re-varnished. Ready to hang.



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