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This painting alludes to the legend that James Stuart was saved by this loyal greyhound during a boar hunt. The hound has been rewarded with a pearl-studded collar, whilst the spear in the background is suggestive of a ‘character’ portrait. Known to be a keen actor, it is likely that it was the idea of the sitter that he be painted as Adonis, the hunter loved by Venus (he had previously been painted by van Dyck as the Trojan prince Paris).
oil on canvas
H 99.7 x W 160 cm
Iveagh Bequest, 1929