charlotte lady owen of orielton c1810 circle of sir thomas lawrence

Charlotte, Lady Owen of Orielton c.1810; Circle of Sir Thomas Lawrence.



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Oil on canvas laid on board in cassetta frame, glazed.
Charlotte, Lady Owen of Orielton near Pembroke. was born Charlotte Lewis Phillips of Llwyncrwn, Llangynin, Carmarthenshire and created a scandal when she and John Lord (later Sir John Owen) eloped to Gretna Green to be married in 1800. She was not a great heiress; Llwyncrwn was a minor place and she had two brothers.
John Lord (born 1776) was the heir to the ancient and large Orielton estate.
(The Owen of Orielton family played a prominent part in the history of Pembrokeshire for nearly three centuries. The estate of Orielton in Castlemartin came into the possession of the Owen family by the marriage of Hugh to Elizabeth Wirriot in 1571.)
John's mother was an Owen and he was the nearest relation when Sir Hugh Owen died in 1809 without issue – the last of the old line. He changed his name to Owen and pursued a political career which brought him a baronetcy in 1813.
Charlotte died in 1829 without issue and Sir John remarried and had more success with heirs.
Sir John was impetuous, (witness his elopement with Charlotte) and a spendthrift, the money spent in furthering his political ambitions eventually bankrupting the Orielton estate. The house and estate were sold by the Owens in 1857, Sir John had ceased living there some years before. (see Image 5 for Orielton.)
Charlotte was painted full length by Sir Thomas Lawrence in the 1820s (see Image 4) Thus we know her appearance; our portrait works very well as a younger version of Lawrence’s sitter.
The portrait has, at some time in the past, been reduced in size, and the scale of the head suggests that originally it was a seated half or three quarter length. However, this has not had an adverse effect on the image; on the contrary, as the young woman now fills her space within the frame it is as if she has moved closer to the viewer, creating a strong feeling of intimacy.
A label on the back of the picture bears the name of Admiral Herbert Willes Hope (1878-1968). He was the 8th child of Ellen Evelyn Elizabeth Jordan and Rear Admiral Charles Webley Hope. Ellen E. E. Jordan was the only child of Ellen Owen who was married in 1831 to G. B. J Jordon who lived at Pigeonsford Mansion.
SIZE: image 17¼ x 16¼ in. (44 x 41.5 cm.) Frame 23 x 22 in. (58.5 x 56 cm.)
PROVENANCE:* by descent to
* The Jordan family of Pigeonsford Mansion, Llangrannog, Cardiganshire.
*Admiral Herbert Willis Hope
*Radnorshire Fine Art
*Shropshire Private Collection
Internal Ref: 8695

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