C1800 Georgian Miniature of Officer, in an Henry Clay Frame


Two qualities make this a desirable miniature. Firstly, the miniature painting of a young, handsome and dashing Regency Officer in a bright red coat has great appeal. It is well painted, but has a little damage to the sleeve and jacket , lower left. Secondly, the frame is marked Clay, impressed several times in the back of the frame. The oval backboard of the miniature is also impressed Clay, so it is original, as is the convex glass with gilt and black border. The frame is by the famous Henry Clay of Birmingham and London: "Japanner in ordinary to His Majesty and His Majesty the Prince of Wales.". His great wealth and renown rests on the patent he took out in 1772 for "new improved paper-ware": oven cured papier-mache sheets suitable for carriage panels, furniture etc and frames. He traded in London at 18 King St, Covent Garden from about 1785, then origin of this frame. Clay supplied papier-mache items to George III, The Prince of Wales for Carlton House, and a sedan chair for Queen Charlotte. He died in 1812 leaving a vast fortune, all made from paper goods. His firm continued.

15.5 cm excluding suspension loop, by 14 cm.

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